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THE PILGRIM 



Vol. 38 JANUARY, 1991 No. 1 



"Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain 
from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul." i Peter 2:ti 



SHINING SHORE 

My days are gliding swiftly by 
And I, a pilgrim stranger, 
Would not detain them as they fly — 
Those hours of toil and danger. 

We'll gird our loins, my brethren dear, 
Our heavenly home discerning; 
Our absent Lord has left us word, 
Let every lamp be burning. 

Should coming days be cold and dark, 
We need not cease our singing; 
That perfect rest naught can molest 
Where golden harps are ringing. 

Let sorrow's rudest tempest blow, 

Each chord on earth to sever ? 

Our King says come, and there's our home, 

Forever! forever! 

For now we stand on Jordan's strand, 
Our friends are passing over, 
And, just before, the shining shore 
We may almost discover. 

—David Nelson, 1835 



THE PILGRIM is a religious magazine published in the interests of the members of the 
Old Brethren Church. Subscription rate: $2.00 per year. Sample copies sent free on request. 
Publishing Editor: Leslie Cover- 
Address: THE PILGRIM, 19201 Cherokee Rd., Tuolumne, CA 95379 



HAPPY NEW YEAR 

"Happiness is having a friend." "Happiness is 
riding a horse." "Happines is a warm blanket." 
Sayings like these appear on bumper stickers, on 
bulletin boards and signs showing that indeed our 
generation is thinking of and defining happiness. 
The definitions vary and the ways to obtain it are 
many according to the desires of the ones seeking 
it. 

By our observations of people — on the freeways 
and busy sidewalks — and by our own experience, we 
must conclude that many are unhappy much of the 
time. No doubt this is because we seek for happi- 
ness in the wrong places and by the wrong means. 

Sad to say, many associate Happy New Year with 
partying and excessive drinking. The morning after 
such celebrations they are anything but happy. And 
the accidents caused by drunkenness bring sorrow 
and remorse. So, as in other areas, the world's 
standard of happiness differs much from God's. The 
definition is different, and so are the means by 
which we find it. 

Hannah Whitall Smith, the Quaker lady writing in 
The Christian's Secret of a Happy Life , says that 
happiness is a gift and not an attainment. She 
also comments that many Christians are not happy: 
"A keen observer once said to me, 'You Christians 
seem to have a religion that makes you miserable. 
You are like a man with a headache. He does not 
want to get rid of his head, but it hurts him to 
keep it. You cannot expect outsiders to seek very 
earnestly for anything so uncomfortable. ' Then for 
the first time I saw, in a flash, that the religion 
of Christ ought to be, and was meant to be, to it's 
possessors, not something to make them miserable 
but something to make them happy..." So then 
happiness is a part of our Christian witness as 



THE PILGRIM 



well as a desirable state to be in. This happiness 
we speak of is the real kind by God's definition 
and not the world's. 

One reason so many are not receiving happiness 
is that they are not seeking it in the right 
manner. We do not find happiness in the things of 
life. The Savior said (Luke 12:15), "Take heed, 
and beware of covetousness: for a man's life 
consisteth not in the abundance of the things which 
he possesseth." I believe Jesus meant this very 
quality of happiness or satisfaction 
— fulfillment — in our daily living. Jesus 
proceeded to tell of the rich man who had abundant 
crops with no room to store them. He decided to 
build bigger barns, lay up his goods and fruits, 
and then take it easy. That very night he was 
called to die; his soul was required of him. Some- 
one else enjoyed the fruit of his labors. Jesus 
concluded with these sobering words: "So is he 
that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not 
rich toward God." 

What then does bring happiness? Malachi 3:15 
says, "And now we call the proud happy; yea, they 
that work wickedness are set up; yea, they that 
tempt God are even delivered." How mixed up can 
men get? We read of martyrs who sang songs as they 
rode to the place of execution. People don't sing 
when they are terrified. They must have had a 
happiness the world knows nothing of. I Peter 4:14 
says, "If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, 
happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God 
resteth upon you..." Again he writes (3:14), "But 
and if ye suffer for righteousness* sake, happy are 
ye: And be not afraid of their terror, neither be 
troubled." James 5:11 says, "Behold, we count them 
happy which endure..." Obviously there is 
something other than present physical comforts that 
produces happiness. 

Joy is just one of the happy fruits listed in 
Galatians 5:22,23« Though we know this true 
happiness comes only by God's Spirit, there are 
still some requirements made of those who receive 



THE PILGRIM 



it. Eliphaz, in criticizing Job, did speak some 
valuable truths. He said (Job 5:17), "Behold, 
happy is the man whom God correcteth; therefore 
despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty." 
the writer of Hebrews continued the thought: "For 
whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourge th 
every son whom he receiveth. " The car accident, 
the financial fiasco, a time of drouth or crop 
failure, or any number of problems we may encounter 
could well be God's fatherly correcting stroke. 
Did it ever occur to us to be happy for these if we 
can learn by them God's lesson to us? Uncle Ernest 
Wagner, in his disability, has written that our 
greatest lessons are learned through suffering 
affliction. 

Proverbs 14:21 says "...He that hath mercy on 
the poor, happy is he." Proverbs 28:14 says, 
"Happy is the man that feareth alway^ " and Proverbs 
29:18 says, "...He that keepeth the law, happy is 
he." Things we can do? Sure, by God's help. 

Hannah Whitall Smith in her book on the 
Christian Secret goes on to represent that secret 
to happiness as being total commitment to Jesus 
Christ. Conversely, unhappiness comes when we know 
what is right and fail to do it, or serve our own 
desire instead. This harmonizes with what Paul 
writes in Romans 14:22, "...Happy is he that 
condemneth not himself in that thing which he 
alloweth." And Jesus' own words in connection with 
His commands concerning washing one another's feet 
and being willing to serve one another are: "If ye 
know these things, happy are ye if ye do them." 
(John 13:17) 

In this new year we can be truly happy if we 
have the mind of Christ. Psalm 40:7,8 prophesied 
of His attitude: "Then said I Lo, I come: in the 
volumne of the book it is written of me, I delight 
to do thy will my God: yea, thy law is within my 
heart." With this attitude for 1991, we can be 
assured of true happiness and joy in the Lord. 

— L.C. 



THE PILGRIM 



THE MENACE OF MATERIALISTIC MINDS 

In examining some of the individual's respons- 
ibilities of "FOLLOWING JESUS," I had to ask my- 
self, "What keeps men from being in close fellow- 
ship with Jesus?" The problem was mentioned in a 
sentence: "All too often we savour the things in 
this world." Now let's examine this problem more 
closely. 

Materialism is truly a menace or threat to His 
people, and always has been since Adam and Eve were 
distracted by the appeal of that fruit. Jesus 
dealt with this same type of problem well when He 
instructed the rich, young man, "If thou wilt be 
perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to 
the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: 
and come and follow me. But when the young man 
heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he 
had great possessions." (Mt. 19:21,22) 

In Samuel's day, the people also savoured the 
things of men. "And his sons walked not in his 
ways, but turned aside after lucre (money), and 
took bribes, and perverted judgement. Then all the 
elders of Israel gathered themselves together, and 
came to Samuel unto Ramah, And said unto him, 
Behold, thou art old, and thy sons walk not in thy 
ways: now make us a king to judge us like all the 
nations." (l Sam. 8:3-5) The key to their problem 
lay in the fact that they had departed from the 
"old paths" (Jer. 6:16), and were attending too 
much on worldly things. Read the account of Samuel 
counseling with the people in I Sam. 12. He pleads 
with them to "Only fear the Lord, and serve him in 
truth with ALL YOUR HEART..." (v. 24) They realized 
they had sinned and in asking for a king added to 
their sins. (v. 19) Notice that God did allow and 
choose a king for the Isrealites, but He chose a 
godly man who He hoped would bring His people back 
into His way. Clearly though, this was not God's 
original plan, and Samuel protested the idea but 
accepted God's decision. (8:6,7) Then, they lived 
happily ever after, right? Sad to say, no, they 



6 THE PILGRIM 

didn t. There's a long story of coming and going 
from God. But each time they fell it was because 
they were attending too much to earthly things and 
affairs. 

So we see this menace has been around since the 
beginning of man, and still is. Walk through any 
mall, any store, and you can even feel this menac- 
ing, hideous strength of worldly spirits. But, do 
we feel it? Have we been brought up so much in 
this materialistic spirit that we are unable to 
perceive it? What a dangerous position to be in to 
not be able to perceive things dangerous to our 
soulsl 

The great danger materialism can cause is the 
distraction from spiritual things. In thinking of 
the home, I believe the husband and wife start 
losing their FIRE for their Lord when they start 
attending more and more to earthly pleasures. When 
the home loses this FIRE, the Church has just lost 
some of its FIRE and the consequences will be 
detrimental to the Church. Jesus says, "... that 
which is highly esteemed among men is abomination 
in the sight of God." (Ek. 16:15) 

The Brethren's past has been marred by 
disputings and schisms over worldly things. The 
industrial revolution started hammering out all 
kinds of nice things to distract Christians; which 
is exactly what it did to most. Automobiles, 
electricity, telephones, carpets, radios, tele- 
vision, electronics, and computers all have been 
subjects of disputings among brethren if not 
divisions. Why? Because "The flesh lusteth 
against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the 
flesh; and these are contrary the one to the other: 
so that ye cannot do the things that ye would." 
(Gal. 5:17) So these disputings were influenced by 
a materialistic spirit (flesh) undermining the 
Spirit of God, with the expected result of dimin- 
ished love and then, division. 

Consequently, the industrial revolution generated 
a denominational revolution. As a result, churches 



THE PILGRIM 



either focused on externals, or disregarded exter- 
nals. In either case, Satan made certain inroads 
into the Church, causing it to be less effective in 
its witness to the world. This has surely caused 
more damage to the Church than in the days of the 
Martyrs. They endured all kinds of torture and 
death, while we in comparison, lie on "flowery beds 
of ease" playing with our toys and bickering with 
one another. What a shame I 

We must show the world that living for Jesus is 
a sharp, definite contrast from the world. We must 
show them that it is an entirely different SPIRIT. 
We must show them that Jesus 1 command "FOLLOW ME" 
means a whole new lifestyle of forsaking all of our 
former ways. We must DEMONSTRATE separation, self- 
denial, conformity to Christ, (by transforming our 
minds with the power of the Holy Spirit), and the 
fruit of the Spirit listed in Gal. 5:22. 

One of the most outstanding virtues of Jesus' 
life was His dedication to His Father's will. His 
is the greatest example of self-denial, of 
conforming wholly and unselfishly to His Father. 
What an example for us to followl The Apostle Paul 
emphatically states, "But PUT YE ON THE LORD JESUS 
CHRIST, and make not provision for the flesh, to 
fulfil the lust thereof." (Ho. 13:14) Lamsa 
translates this, "But CLOTHE YOURSELVES with our 
Lord Jesus, and disregard the lust of the flesh." 
It is something to put on and be covered with. 
Where do we wear it? ". . .1 will put my laws into 
their MIND, and write them in their HEARTS: and I 
will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a 
people." (He. 8:10) This is where we wear them and 
the result. This is what God wants — a people sepa- 
rated unto Him, denying self to Him, conforming 
their whole being to Him. Does this describe us? 

The life (light) of the Church totally depends 
on each and every member. The Apostle Paul tells 
us to glorify God in our body and in our spirit 
(I Co. 6:20), because our body is the temple, hom^ 
or dwelling place of the Holy Ghost, (v. 19) We 
glorify God in our body by keeping our body pure 



8 THE PILGRIM 



and undefiled, a home FIT for the Holy Ghost- We 
glorify God in our spirit by keeping ourselves from 
the spirits of the world and producing fruits of 
the Holy Spirit. 

A dangerous spirit so prevalent today is that of 
merchandising. We live to buy* Something new 
"that we've always wanted," puts us in a good mood 
for awhile and makes our life seem so much brighter, 
richer, and fuller. Sure, we must have possessions 
to live, but what a tragedy it is when we let them 
possess us I Let's assess how much of our mind is 
taken up by them. "There are many devices in a 
man's heart, " declares Proverbs 19:21. The Apostle 
Paul reminds us that we are NOT "ignorant of his 
(Satan's) devices." (II Co. 2:ll) They only serve 
to lure and distract. This is exactly how we can 
know whether something is right or not: by how much 
it distracts us from following the Lord and attend- 
ing to righteousness and His people. "...The 
counsel of the Lord, that shall stand." (Pr- 19:21) 

Let's honestly examine our motivating forces. 
Let's examine ourselves and see "what manner of 
spirit (we) are of." (Lk. 9:55) Is my mind being a 
menace to His Kingdom, His people? Are we cloth- 
ing ourselves with humility? (I Pe. 5:5) Are we 
loving not the world, neither the things that are 
in the world? "If any man love the world, the love 
of the Father is not in him. For all that is in 
the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of 
the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the 
Father, but is of the world." (I Jo. 2:15,16) 

Finally, we need to be concerned that we are 
providing our children with sound teachings and 
examples. We need to pass on to them our convic- 
tions and our vision of the Church. We must pro- 
vide DIRECTION to our children for when we are gone. 

In conclusion, I'm impressed with one of Jesus' 
pleas to His Father: "That thou shouldest keep 
them from the evil . " ( Jo . 17 : 15 ) Isn ' t this what 
it's all about? That is why we are a separated 
people (II Co. 6:17), a "peculiar people" (Titus 
2:14), "... a chosen generation, a royal priest- 
hood an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye 



THE PILGEIM 



should show forth the praises of him who hath 
called you out of darkness into his marvelous light 
(life)". (I Pe. 2:9) 



— Ron Cable 

Goshen, Indiana 



INTERPRETATION OR OBEDIENCE? 

St. John 16:13: "Howbeit when he, the Spirit of 
truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: 
for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever 
he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew 
you things to come." 

While these words were spoken primarily to those 
followers of the time Jesus Christ walked the 
earth, and more specifically to the apostles, we 
believe all Scripture is given for our benefit. 
Certainly the Spirit of Truth, the Holy Spirit, 
will guide us into all truth if we allow Him to. 

But if this is true why do so many Christians 
differ on so many issues? We do not profess to 
have the complete answer to that question. How- 
ever, we believe our Brethren forefathers used 
wisdom when they put great emphasis on OBEDIENCE 
and much less on interpretation. This is not to 
say that they did not make it clear what they 
believed and why they believed it. But when 
Scripture instructed something to be obeyed they 
tried to follow that teaching, and when Scripture 
forbade something they attempted to avoid it. The 
plain way of life was not so much Bible interpreta- 
tion as it was Bible obedience. 

Man's interpretation has led to denial of a 
divine creation. It questions who God is, the 
divinity of Jesus Christ, and the personality of 
the Holy Spirit, among many other things. One 
man's interpretation leads him to make the 
following statement: "Awareness of God's 
limitation requires reconstruction in our 
theology. We will refrain from using the term 
'Almighty God.' We will avoid escapist tendencies 



10 THE PILGRIM ,__, 

to say: The future is In God's hands ' or r God Ts 
in control* ' 

Some areas of interpretation have caused unfort- 
unate splits and bad feelings among brethren* Pro- 
phecy is one of these- Some types of interpreta- 
tion we feel are very dangerous. One of these is 
unconditional eternal security. Some interpreta- 
tions are downright blasphemy, such as the one 
listed above. Most, if not all of us, will differ 
on Bible interpretation at one time or another. If 
this interpretation involves an area of obedience 
we may be judged by God for not allowing 
the Holy Spirit to lead us into all truth or for 
disobedience to His Holy Word. 

- — James M. Hite 

Palmyra , Pennsylvania 



UNCLE ERNEST 1 S MEDITATIONS 
REFLECTIONS 

When we are old, and disabled, we remember the 
days when we had good health, and enjoy the 
memories of them, but we cannot go back and live 
them over. Jesus has promised us a far better 
life, when He has fully converted us to enter the 
place He has prepared for us. We have the example 
when Jesus asked Peter if he loved Him more than 
his old life as a fisherman. So where should our 
joys and hopes be fixed or anchored? 

LOVE MERCY 

Micah 6:8: "He hath shewed thee, man, what is 
good; and what doth the Lord require of thee but to 
do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly 
with thy God? M Jesus told us whom He would call to 
come unto His kingdom on the final judgement. 
Deeds of mercy and compassion are the most 
important. All have the opportunity to do these. 



THE PILGRIM 11 



LEARNING OBEDIENCE 

Heb. 5:8: "Though he were a Son, yet learned he 
obedience by the things which he suffered." So we 
see we need to obey the Lord in all things, even if 
it doesn't appear right to us. Job thought God 
wasn't treating him fair, but God wanted to give 
him a great blessing. Our greatest lessons are 
learned through suffering afflictions. 

PERILOUS TIMES 

II Tim 5:1: "This know also, that in the last 
days, perilous times shall come." I think we all 
are aware of this. 

The news that is gathered from all over the 
world and published and broadcasted daily, has to 
come through propaganda offices, where it is 
distorted to favor the interest of the different 
countries. By this means people are influenced, 
and hatred and war are promoted. 

OUR CROWNS 

II Timothy 4:8: "Henceforth there is laid up for 
me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the 
righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not 
to me only, but unto all them also that love his 
appearing." 

Ve find this crown called other names, as crown 
of life, glory, etc. It must bring us into direct 
contact with God and Christ. 

Ve will not become tired and weary and need rest 
and sleep, as we do in this life. 

— Ernest Wagner 



ADDRESS CORRECTION 
Jesse Cover's phone number 586-1397 



12 THE PILGRIM 



EARTHEN VESSEL 

An earthen vessel, Lord, am I, 
A thing of mud and clay. 
I wait my Master 's tender touch 
To fill me every day. 

I know You cannot use me, Lord, 

If I'm already filled 

With thoughts of self... or worldliness 

Or hate... or stubborn willed. 

And Lord, it is so hard for me 
To empty out the dross! 
I try so hard; I struggle so... 
And yet it all seems loss. 

So take this earthen vessel, Lord, 
And wash it nice and new; 
Cleanse every little nook, and then 
Please fill it, Lord, with You' 

Then pour me out to bless some soul 
Who stumbles on the way. 
I only ask You use me, Lord 
Just use me, Lord, today! 

— Vera Miller 

Pioneer, California 

"For God, who commanded the light to shine out 
of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the 
light of the knowledge of the Glory of God in the 
face of Jesus Christ. But we have this treasure in 
earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power 
may be of God and not of us." 

— II Corinthians 4:6,7 



He who is on the road to heaven 
will not be content to go there alone. 



JOHN MAS, 1670-1741 



John Naas, was second in ability to none, of all 
the colonial ministers. He was "born in 
Westphalia f Germany, twelve miles north of Emden. 
He possessed much native ability and received a 
good education. He joined the Creyfeld 
congregation, where he was soon called to the 
ministry. He went far and near on missionary tours 
and was very successful in bringing souls into the 
knigdom. At Creyfeld he was a wise and tolerant 
leader in the church. He opposed the narrow policy 
of Christian Libe and his followers, and for some 
years retired to Switzerland from active work. 

In 1733 he came to America, perhaps at the 
invitation of Alexander Mack. In a letter to his 
son he has given a most vivid account of the horror 
of the sea voyages in those days. He was welcomed 
at Germantown, but settled at Amwell, N.J., where he 
was the organizer and elder of the Amwell Church. 
He also organized the Great Swamp Church. His 
influence for good was felt inmany of the colonial 
churches. He visited Ephrata in 1736, hoping to 
effect a reconciliation with Beissel. In this he 
failed, but was much impressed with many things he 
saw at Ephrata. 

Elder Naas was a broad-minded, large-hearted man. 
He was most eloquent in preaching. He was a writer 
of many good poems, which were collected and 
published under the title, The Little Harp. He was 
of powerful physical build, being nearly a head 
taller than the ordinary man. For this reason he 
was one time seized by the agents of the Prussian 
king, who desired just such men for his regiment of 
giants. After cruel torture, to force his 
compliance, he was brought before the king himself, 
who released him after hearing his earnest 
profession of loyalty to Jesus Christ. 

He was twice married, and had three children. 
Only one daughter came to America. She married 
Hannes Landes, who after a short stay with Beissel 



14 



THE PILGRIM 



at Ephrata, became a faithful member of the 
Conestoga Church. Elder Nass was buried in the 
cemetery at Amwell, though no stone marks his grave. 
— from History and Doctrine of the Church of 
the Brethren — Otho Winger 

?? QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS ?? 



We have had several requests for a question and 
answer section in The Pilgrim . In 1966 and 1973-75 
we had questions and answers, and perhaps we can 
revive it. We have the first question for this 
issue and invite any who would to send in an 
answer. If you have a question please feel free to 
send it to The Pilgrim . 



QUESTION: 



How can we discern what and how we 



should use in material things? It is very much 
appreciated and agreed upon that we don't write 
down just exactly what is acceptable and what is 
not, materially, other than what the Scriptures 
say. It seems to me we have different needs at 
different stages of our life. Should we not take 
this into account before we judge if another should 
have or do it or if it is in place for us 
ourselves? Read Romans 14 • Please help me to 
understand this better. 

— A fellow pilgrim desiring to 
understand the Word Better and to live in such a 
way that I would be a witness for Christ. 



With this issue we begin the thirty-eighth year 
of The Pilgrim . We are grateful to all who have 
helped so faithfully. Peel free to send your 
favorite poems, or articles, or your own writing. 
Most subscriptions expire this month and will be 
noted beside your name on the address. If you are 
receiving The Pilgrim free, please let us know if 
we should continue. We thank Bill Miller for 
supplying our address labels, Peter and Sarah Cover 
for typing, and others who help in various ways. 

Leslie and Martha Cover 



YOUTH PAGE: PROBLEMS 15 

One can gloss a problem over and try to forget 
it, or one can face the problems head-on and fight 
until the victory is won and true peace is acheived. 

There was a man who borrowed money so that he 
could increase his living standard. When his bills 
came due he borrowed more money to keep going. 
After a period of time he was faced with bank- 
ruptcy. After the court sold all his things and 
paid his debt he was left homeless, hungry, and 
cold, on the street. 

There was another man who also borrowed money 
and became bankrupt. But he cut his spending, made 
bargains with his creditors to give him another 
chance, and worked hard to earn more money. After 
he had paid his last bill, he was a changed man. 
He now owns instead of owes. 

The first man glossed his problem over until it 
defeated him. The other man fought his problem 
until he got victory. 

Every person is born with a sin nature which one 
must fight ones whole life. Life has only two 
ends, Heaven and Hell. 

But thanks be to God, which giveth us the 
victory through our Lord Je3us Christ. 
(1 Cor, 15:57) 

Will you surrender to God and fight self, or 
will you let self defeat you? 

— Danny Wagner 
Gettysburg, Ohio 



Things mostly happen for the best. 
However hard it seems today, 
When some fond plan has gone astray 
Or what you've wished for most is lost 
An'you sit countin* up the cost 
With eyes half-blind by tears of grief 
While doubt is chokin' out belief, 
You'll find when all isunderstood 
That what seemed bad was really good. 

— Edgar A. Guest 






CHILDREN'S PAGE 

GOD MAKES NO MISTAKES 

The animals of the forest decided to do some- 
thing meaningful about the problems of the new 
world. They adopted an activity curriculum of 
running, climbing, swimming, and flying. The duck 
was excellent in swimming, but only made passing 
grades in flying and was very poor in running. 
Since he was slow in running he had to drop 
swimming and stay after school to practice 
running. This caused his webbed feet to be badly 
worn, so he was only average in swimming. The 
rabbit started at the top of his class in running 
but developed a nervous twitch in his leg muscles 
because of so much makeup work in swimming. The 
squirrel was excellent in climbing but had a 
problem in flying classes because his teacher made 
him start from the ground up instead of the treetop 
down. The eagle was a problem child. In climbing 
classes he beat all the others to the top of the 
tree but insisted on his own way of getting there. 

What is true of the creatures of the forest is 
true of God's Children, We are not all made the 
same. We each have our special talents that we can 
do better than others. Never compare yourself with 
your friends. When we do this we become disatis- 
fied with ourselves. Remember the duck. He was an 
excellent swimmer, but when he tried to be the same 
as everyone else , he couldn ' t do anything really 
well. Jesus wants you to be just you . 

We are little builders, rearing block by block; 

And our sure foundation is the solid rock. 

Not for wealth we're building, nor for praise of 

But for our redeemer, doing all we can. [man 

--Everett Oyler (E.R. Latta) 

NON-PROFIT ORG. -BULK RATE-U.S. POSTAGE PAID-PERMIT#10 

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THE PILGRIM 



VOL, 38 FEBRUARY, 1991 NO. 2 



"Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain 
from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul." tPeterztt 



hark: the voice of jesus 



Hark the voice of Jesus crying, 
"Who will go and work today? 
Fields are white, and harvests waiting; 
Who will bear the sheaves away?" 
Loud and long the Master calleth, 
Rich reward He offers free; 
Who will answer, gladly saying, 
"Here am I; send me, send me." 



If you cannot be the watchman 
Standing high on Zion's wall, 
Pointing out the path to Heaven, 
Offering life and peace to all, 
With your prayers and with your bounties 
You can do what Heaven demands; 
You can be like faithful Aaron 
Holding up the prophet's hands. 

Let none hear you idly saying, 
"There is nothing I can do," 
While the souls of men are dying, 
And the Master calls for you, 
Take the task He gives you gladly; 
Let His work your pleasure be; 
Answer quickly when He calleth, 
"Here Am I; send me, send me." 



w 



— Daniel March 



THE PILGRIM is a religious magazine published in the interests of the members of the 
Old Brethren Church. Subscription rate: $2.00 per year. Sample copies sent free on request. 
Publishing Editor: Leslie Cover- 
Address; THE PILGRIM, 19201 Cherokee Rd., Tuolumne, CA 96379 



OUR SAVIOUR'S PEACE 

Our country is at war! It seems unreal, because 
for many years there has been peace* It seems that 
the nations cannot be long without war. But what 
should our attitudes be in the light of Jesus' words 
and seeing the present conflict in the Middle East? 
What should a young Christian do if he is called on 
to fight for his country? 

When a nation is at war, does the Sermon on the 
Mount suddenly not apply? In re-reading the 
Saviour's teaching in Matthew 5> it is hard to es- 
cape the simple meaning of His words. "Ye have 
heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy 
neighbor and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, 
Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do 
good to them that hate you, and pray for them which 
despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye 
may be the children of your Father which is in heav- 
en: For he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and 
on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and the 
unjust." (Matthew 5:43) It seems evident that these 
instructions are for those who desire to be like our 
Heavenly Father. It is not directed to nations, but 
to Jesus' followers. Can we find violations of 
these words in the New Testament account of Jesus 
disciples? Are inconsistencies there? No. 

The words of the hymn writer Lydia A. Forney are 
so fitting here: 

If I would be a child of God, 

I surely must obey His word; 

With cheerful heart and willing mind, 

To all His precepts be inclined. 
Through the ages of the Church of Jesus Christ, 
His people have "obeyed His word" in loving their 
enemies. They have prayed for their persecutors. 
The long list of martyrs testifies to this. They 
went to torture and death praying for the forgive- 
ness of those who were piling the logs on the fire. 
tephen*^ testimony wan only the beginning. 



THE PILGRIM 3 

John Naaa, (the subject of our "historical article 
this month and last) Brethren minister in Germany, 
was wanted by the Prussian king's army because of 
his great Stature. The recruiters tried to force 
him to join and even tortured him and finally 
suspended him by his thumb and great toe ? but he 
would not yield. Taken before the king he 
testified that he had "enlisted in the noblest and 
best army; and I cannot become a traitor to my 
King." Asked who this King was, he replied, "The 
great Prince Immanuel, our Lord Jesus Christ. I 
have espoused His cause, and cannot and will not 
forsake Him." The king replied, "Neither will I 
then ask you to do so." He gave him a gold coin 
and released him. 

During World War I, in our country, conscien- 
tious objectors proved they could be steadfast for 
the Lord. There was no provision by the military 
authorities for their views. They simply were 
given army clothes and ordered to put them on. When 
some would not, they were sent to prison and sub- 
jected to deprivation and abuse to force them to 
comply. Many patiently endured, and several Hutter- 
ite boys even died from the rough treatment. 

There were also instances of unfaithfulness to 
Jesus ' commands on the mount . The Waldensians for 
many years did not resist their persecutors. Their 
adversaries, the Roman church and state authorities, 
would trick them, pretending to make peace to lure 
them from their mountatin retreats. When they came 
down trusting, they were mercilessly seized and put 
to death. Finally, in desperation, they began to 
resist the military attacks on their mountain 
homes. They were quite successful in holding nar- 
row passes with only a handful of men against great 
numbers. But how can we justifly violation of our 
Saviour's words? No earthly peace or victory is 
worth the disapproval of the King of Heaven. 

Another violation among otherwise non-resistant 
people was in Russia during the Bolshevic Revolu- 



4 ' THE PILGRIM 

tion. THe Mennonites Ha3 lived In peace In Fhe 
Ukraine since their migration there in 1786 from 
Germany. They were promised exemption from military 
service. The Ukraine, through a treaty in 1918, was 
given to Germany for a time. But later the same year 
communist soldiers began to recapture the Ukraine. 
Some of the young Mennonites organized to resist and 
fought on the side of the Germans. In the end it 
meant severe persecution for the Mennonite Chris- 
tians by the Communists. The towns that had not re- 
sisted fared better than the rest. But the greatest 
reward is the approval of our Heavenly Father no 
matter what it may mean in our earthly affairs. 

In our time we see churches failing to stand on 
the words of Jesus. In one Brethren denomination 
some years ago we were told the churches would sup- 
port the young men in any stand they chose to take: 
conscientious objector, non-combatant in the mili- 
tary, or active military. How sad that the young 
men must rely on their own understanding without 
decisive teaching from their church leaders! 

We are privileged to have been given good, solid 
teaching on the attitude of the Christian to mili- 
tary service. We do not attempt to judge our coun- 
try for its decisions in regard to wars. The 
Saviour told U3 there would be wars. But He did not 
say it was the Father's will. And He did call us 
and all His followers to a higher Kingdom with a 
divine government. Jesus told Pilate that if His 
Kingdom were of this world, His servants would fight 
"That I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now 
is my kingdom not from hence." (John 18:36) 

This Kingdom is ordered by God who says, "Ven- 
geance is mine: I will repay,: He tells us to over- 
come evil with good. Our battle is a spiritual one 
and the weapons are not guns. (Read II Cor 10:4-6) 

We must respect and pray for our country's lead- 
ers, obey its laws, and pay its taxes. But God's 
laws are first for Christians. We need to show by 
our lives (And death if nesessary) that Jesus' words 
are just as important today as when He spoke them. 

— L.C. 



THE PILGRIM 



THE DAY 

This is the day which the Lord hath made; 
We will rejoice and be glad in it. 

We enjoy to hear the melody of this verse sung by 
the school children. We believe it is a good way to 
start a new day (as we think of a day) although we 
believe this text found in Psalm 118 had a different 
significance than a 24 hour day. 

The word day , defined, can mean various time 
spans. The most common is a 24 hour span when the 
earth makes one revolution. Or it can mean a period 
of day light, or a period of action or state of 
being without definite reference of time. The 
latter, we feel is the context in which the text 
was quoted. 

Psalm 118 is a beautiful testimony of God's love 
and salvation to man, and it is climaxed in praise 
and adoration. 

"I will praise thee, for thou hast heard me, and 
art become my salvation . u 

"The stone which the builders refused is become 
the head of the corner." 

"This is the Lord ' s doing; it is marvellous in 
our eyes." 

"This is the day which the Lord hath made; we 
will rejoice and be glad in it." 

It is claimed by some that this was the theme of 
the hymn that was sung that night in the upper room. 
How fitting this would have been! 

Jesus quotes some of those very words in His fin- 
al testimony to men. He told them, "Destroy this 
temple and in three days I will build it up." He 
said unto them, "Did ye never read in the scrip- 
tures, The stone which the builders rejected, the 
same is become the head of the corner: this is the 
Lord's doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes?" 
The psalmist saw this day and rejoiced in it. 

As man marvelled and magnified the temple of 
stones that crumbled, how much more ought we 



THE PILGRIM 



respond, when we view this new temple that will 
never crumble. "But ye are a chosen generation, a 
royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar 
people; that ye should show forth the praises of 
him who hath called you out of darkness into his 
marvellous light." (I Peter 2:9) 

"Ye are all the children of light, and the child- 
ren of the day : we are not of the night, nor of 
darkness, therefore let us not sleep, as do others; 
but let us watch and be sober." (I Thessalonians 
5:5,6) 

1991 will only be an extension of this marvel- 
lous day. Only those who have accepted the Chief 
Corner Stone and are receiving the benefits can re- 
joice and be glad in it. 

May the day dawn, and the day star arise in our 
hearts that we can identify with those who revealed 
this marvellous truth to us long before it came to 
pass (David) and when it finally was revealed 
(Simeon and Anna). 

— Kenneth Martin 

Nappanee , Indiana 



THE WALL CAME DOWN 

When the Berlin wall was built in 1961, traffic 
between the two sides of the city was greatly limit- 
ed. I knew a few persons who had gone into East 
Berlin through Checkpoint Charlie and came back 
again. But for the multitudes of people living in 
the eastern sector, that wall was the roadblock to 
freedom. Some in desperation tried to escape under 
the wall or over the wall. Some tried to make it 
through the wall itself. I remember hearing how 
slanted mirrors on wheels were used by the offi- 
cials to look for escapees clinging to the under- 
side of vehicles going through Checkpoint Charlie. 
For over 25 years the Berlin Wall stood as a divide 
between the East and the West, between bondage and 
freedom, between want and plenty. 

The year 1990 saw that "Wall of Shame" come down. 



^ THE PILGRIM 7 

We saw pictures of the joyful Berliners standing on 
the wall that had once held them in- We saw the 
celebrating men striking the wall with sledge ham- 
mers. Already over a hundred passages have been 
broken though the wall . The way is now open. No 
longer is passage restricted to a carefully guarded 
checkpoint. The demolition of that wall is a very 
significant milestone toward a unified Germany. 

When the angels sang, "Glory to God in the high- 
est, and on earth peace, good will toward men," 
they were heralding the coming of One who would de- 
molish a far greater "Wall of Shame" than the 
Berlin Wall. For about 4000 years a wall had 
existed between sinful man and the Holy God. That 
Wall was first erected when Adam and Eve were 
driven from the Garden of Eden because of sin. The 
Garden was then guarded by an angel with a flaming 
sword. Sin made a wall between man and God. 

Man was again reminded that the way to God was 
very limited when a wall eight and one-half feet 
high cut off access to the tabernacle. The walls 
of the tabernacle itself limited access into the 
Holy Place. Then before the Holy of Holies itself 
was a thick curtain. Behind that curtain was the 
Ark of the Covenant that signified God's presence 
with His people, Only once a year could the High 
Priest go behind the curtain. 

God so much wanted to be near His people, but 
sin stood in the way of a sinful people coming 
directly to their holy God. The presence of the 
tabernacle was physical evidence that God wanted to 
be with man; but the veil or curtain in the taber- 
nacle and later the temple was a physical reminder 
that there was a "wall" between man and God. 

Then one day almost 2000 years ago at about 3 
o'clock in the afternoon, the wall came down. "And 
the veil of the temple was rent in two from the top 
to the bottom*" (Mark 15:38) That happened when 
Jesus Christ died. His death made a way for us 
sinful men to come directly to God* Before that, 
sin closed the way and placed on us the penalty of 
death. "The soul that sinneth it shall die." But 



8 THE PILGRIM 



God sent His only "begotten Son into the world to 
die for man. An opening was made in the wall be- 
tween man and God. The way is now open. That is 
the peace on earth, goodwill toward men that the 
angels were singing about. That was good news that 
surpassed the opening of the Berlin Wall. 

But the position of a person behind an opened 
wall will not change unless he goes through the 
opening. And so it is with the opening in the wall 
that Jesus made, Just because He died does not 
mean that all men are saved. "For God so loved the 
world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that 
whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but 
have everlasting life." (John 3:16) We were not 
surprised that thousands of East Germans poured 
through the opened Berlin Wall. But why do not 
more people come to God through the opened way of 
Jesus Christ who said: "I am the way, the truth, 
and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by 
me"? That way is still open; the opportunity to 
enter is still there. Why should anyone choose to 
stay in the bondage of sin away from God? 

With rejoicing that the wall came down 
— Lester E. Showalter 

Greencastle, Pennsylvania 



COMMUNION NOTICE 

We, the members of the Eastern congregation of 
the Old Brethren Church, have appointed a Lovefeast 
and Communion for April 27 and 28, the Lord willing, 
at our meeting house near Wakarusa, Indiana. 

A hearty welcome is extended to all our members 

and friends to attend. i» t - r. 

--Melvm Coning 

ADDRESS CHANGES 

Daniel Beery 25600 C.R. 44 Et. 4 Nappanee 
(219) 862-2744 

Kevin Martin 25623 C.R. 44 Nappanee 



THE PILGRIM 



??QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS?? 

QUESTION: How can we discern what and how we should 
use in material things? It is very much appreciated 
and agreed upon that we don't write down just exact- 
ly what is acceptable and what is not, materially, 
other than what the Scriptures say. It seems to me 
we have different needs at different stages of our 
life. Should we not take this into account before 
we judge if another should have or do it or if it 
is in place for us ourselves? 

Read Roamns 14* Please help me to understand this 
better. 

— A fellow pilgrim deisiring to 
understand the Word better and to live in such a 
way that I would be a witness for Christ. 

ANSWER: Material things cover a big area. We are 
all individuals — no two alike. Each person using 
what he thinks he needs at different stages of his 
life is a scary thought to me. No matter what I 
have, my brother has no right to question my action? 

I am thankful my brethren are concerned enough 
to help keep me in check. We all need to become 
closer together. Some say everything we do is just 
between us and God. Don't we have a responsibility 
to the Church? If so, aren't my brothers and 
sisters part of it? 

I too, fully appreciate that we don't have every- 
thing written down — what we can or can't have. If 
it weren't for the closeness of each other we 
couldn't operate this way. I trust we all want to 
leave our little group as good as when we came. 
Someone has wisely said, "If some people were a lit- 
tle more careful how they step, the little ones who 
follow wouldn't stumble so much." 

— Everett Oyler 

ANSWER : The proper judgement in the use of 
material things seems to be summed up in Colossians 
3:17: "And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do 



10 THE PILGRIM 

all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to 
God and the Father by Him* 

If our life is committed to Him, our desire will 
be to use every effort and every possession to 
bring honour and praise to Him. If something will 
hinder that effort, we will not really want it, be- 
cause we want to live for Him. 

Romans 14 points out that using or not using 
material things does not determine our position 
before God. Our attitudes in using or not using 
them is very important. It says we should do our 
best to be inoffensive in our use of these things 
in order to not be a stumbling block to the weak. 

The primary emphasis of this chapter seems to be 
that we should not be critical or judgemental of 
each other. This judgement belongs to God, and it 
is clear we will give account to Him. 

Perhaps the essence of Romans 14 is found in 

verse 19: "Let us therefore follow after the things 

which make for peace and things wherewith one may 

edify another". T ~ 

47 — James Beery 



THIS MONTH'S QUESTION: Jesus said "Give not that 
which is holy unto the dogs* neither cast ye your 
pearls before swine, lest they trample them under 
their feet, and turn again and rend you." (Matthew 
7:6) Who are the dogs and the swine? 

-Everett Oyler 



BAPTISM 

Once again we were made to rejoice with the 
angels in heaven when another soul gave his heart 
to the Lord. Eric Brubaker was baptized on January 
20 confessing his faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and 
covenanting to live faithful through life to Him. 
We pray that his witness will encourage others to 
also find and travel the "Highway of Holiness" that 

leads to eternal life. „ . . _ . 

- Me 1 vi n o n i n & 



THE PILGRIM 11 



OBITUARY 

SUSANNA WAGNER, known and loved as "Susie", was 
born on September 17, 1896, near Quinter, Kansas, 
daughter of Daniel Webster and Mary Fitz (Wolf) 
Wagner. 

The Wagner family moved in 1901 to Sheridan 
Lake , Colorado , where she spent 12 years of her 
youth on a prairie farm. While living there, Susie 
accepted Jesus Christ as her Savior and was baptiz- 
ed in January, 1911* at the tender age of 14 years. 
She remained faithful to her Lord and the Church 
until death. 

In 1913 the family moved west to Reedley, Calif- 
ornia, and then settled at Modesto in 1916 where she 
resided the rest of her life. 

Susie departed this life in Modesto on January 
10, 1991, at the age of 94 years, 3 months, and 24 
days. 

She was preceded in death by her parents; two 
brothers, David and Clay; one half brother, John; 
and two half brothers and two half sisters in 
infancy. 

She is survived by one sister, Elizabeth Cover 
and one brother, Ernest P. Wagner; also 9 nephews, 
5 neices, and many grand-nieces and grand-nephews. 

Susie spent many years of her life caring for 
her parents and was always generous to share what 
she had. Her non-assertive manner and meek 
disposition has touched many lives and is an example 
of the Christian life. 

Funeral services were conducted from Salas 
Brothers Funeral Chapel by Joseph L. and Leslie Cover 
on January 12 using Susie's selection of Psalm 103 
and Hymns 451 and 75 • Burial service at Wood 
Colony Cemetery was conducted by Lloyd Wagner. 

— The Family 



Life with Christ is an endless hope; 
without Him it is a hopeless end. 



12 



Pfetara&l 



(For our historical selection we have the first 
part of a long letter from Elder John Naas to his 
son Jacob Wilhelm who was living in Switzerland. 
The letter describes the journey across the Atlant- 
ic from Europe to the New World and some of the 
hardships endured. Thi3 is taken from A History of 
the Brethren by Martin Grove Brumbaugh.) 

Germantown, the 17th of Oct., 1733. 
Heartily Beloved Son, Jacob Wilhelm Naas, 

I greet thee and thy dear wife Margareta, togeth- 
er with her dear children, very heartily... The 
eternal and almighty God give you all much light of 
grace and faith so that you may not only choose the 
good in time of grace, but may you also win the 
true and active faith, in true sanctificaton and 
childlike obedience in Christ Jesus. Would that the 
great God through Jesus Christ might work this with- 
in us and in all who love his appearance. Amen, yes 
Amen. 

As I have been requested by some to describe our 
journey, I have not been able to refuse it entirely, 
therefore I will do it in as short a way as possible 

The 24th of June we went from Rotterdam to with- 
in half an hour's distance from Dort, where we lay 
still, the wind being contrary. On July 3rd we 
started and the ship was drawn by men several times 
on the river Maas, as far as the neighberhood of 
Helvoetsluys. There the wind became favorable so 
that we sailed into the sea on July 5th, near Hel- 
voetsluys. Then the seasicknes began among the 
people, that is dizziness and vomiting. The 
greatest number after having vomited could begin to 
eat again. 

On the 13 th of July, early in the morning, we 
arrived in the port of Plymouth, which port lies in 
the midst of rocks. We had to lie in the middle of 
the harbor until the ship was released by the custom 
officers and provisioned. 



THE PILGRIM 13 

On July 21st we sailed into the big ocean and on 
our left we lost the land, France and Spain. The 
24th we also lost it on our right, namely England. 
The 25th a little child died. It came upon the ship 
very sick; the next day about 8 o'clock it was bur- 
ied in the sea. ¥hen the body fell from the plank 
into the water I saw with great astonishment that a 
large number of big fish appeared and darted quick- 
ly away in front of the ship, as if they wished to 
flee from the corpse. 

For ten days we had steadily a good breze, so 
that we sailed a long way on the big ocean. 

The 28th of July, before daylight, a French man 
of war by the Elizabeth, came near us. This 
Captain examined our Captain in French. After 
having made themselves known to each other, they 
wished one another a happy trip and each went on 
his course. 

After this day we had very changeable weather so 
that in three weeks we made only sixty hours (about 
180 miles), which in very good wind we could have 
done in one day. 

On August 3$&t I got up an hour before day in or- 
der to see hdw it was going, as I had made up my 
mind to watch the compass during the entire trip, to 
see if there would be a change in our course. When 
I reached the ladder, all the people were still 
asleep and a bedstead was under the ladder, and the 
coverlet of the people lay high up against the lad- 
der, and during the night it had been raining a lit- 
tle so that it was slippery under the trap-hole, and 
while I was standing on the top step of the ladder 
and was about to climb on deck, the people in their 
bed stretched themselves and unwittingly knocked the 

ladder from under my feet; then I fell down from the 
top and with my left side I struck upon the ladder, 
that I was almost unconscious and lay there a long 
time before I could get up. Then I had to lie on my 
back about two weeks till I could get up again and 
walk a little. At first I feared that I would re- 
main lame, but to the great God be all the glory in 
His Son, who has caused me to get well again without 



14 THE PILGRIM 



herbs or plaster, so that I feel but little of it 
any more. 

The 4th the crew early in the morning spiked a 
big fish with a harpoon. It was as long as an ord- 
inary man and shaped in its head like a pig, also in 
body and insides like a pig. 

The 7th of August during the night again a little 
child died and in the same hour a litle boy was born 
and the dead child buried at sea on the 8th. 

The 11th and 12th we had a storm, which was not 
very strong; however, it lasted forty-eight hours, 
so that all the sails had to be reefed , the rudder 
fastened, and the portholes boarded up, so that we 
were sitting in darkness, while the force of the 
waves struck through the porthole glass into the 
beds. Some people always have to vomit during every 
storm and strong, stiff winds. 

On the 15th again a little boy was born. The 
17th we had another storm, which was much stronger 
than the first for six or eight hours and blew the 
sea very high up. It lasted for one and one-half 
nights, but towards the end was not so strong. 
Sails, rudder, holes, everything was hurriedly fast- 
ened up and left to wind and sea. After that it 
grew so calm that we did not get much from the spot 
during several days. Luring this time the people 
got well again from dizziness and vomiting. Then we 
got again strong wind from the side bywhich we made 
good headway. 

On the 23rd of August again a child died and was 
buried at sea that evening. 

The 26th, about 5 o'clock P.M., we passed by a 
mast standing fast, the point of which showed a 
half yard above the water, quite immovable and with 
ends of rope stiU on it. By good fortune our ship 
passed it at about a rod's distance. The Captain 
had just been drinking tea. Many people were very 
much frightened by this sight, because it was impos- 
sible for this mast to be standing on the bottom and 
it yet was immovable. — to be continued 



THE PILGRIM 15 



YOUTH PAGE: BIBLE STUDY: PEACE 

(Some have been asking for an account of our 
young people ' s Bible Studies held on the second 
Sunday afternoon in the MiWuk meeting house. This 
is a summary of the discussion in January of "Peace" 
led by Brother William Crawmer. ) 

Our study chapter was Romans 5 about the peace 
with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Various 
other Scriptures were read as well. Brother Will 
asked the young folks what they thought peace 
meant. Some of the answers were calmness, kind- 
ness, absence of conflict, non-resistance, a fruit 
of the Spirit, etc. 

The peace from God — a positive fruit of the Spir- 
it — was compared to temporary peace among unbeliev- 
ers which is only an absence of conflict. 

Pacifists were contrasted to true non-resistants. 
"Pacifists" can sometimes be quite coercive and 
even violent in their campaigns against war. True 
non-resistance should include everyday conduct, re- 
lationship to neighbors, and basic attitudes . Young 
men especially need to keep a clean, consistent re- 
cord of peaceful lives to obtain a ''Conscientious 
Objector" classification in time of war. Non- 
resistants have a higher motive for peace: Jesus' 
command to love our enemies. 

Peace was defined as "Reconciliation between God 
and man." Adam lost it and Jesus restored it. 

One of the children asked, "What is tribulation?" 
The answer was "trouble, the opposite of peace." 
But we can have tribulation or trouble and even per- 
secution and still have God's peace in our hearts 

— L.C. 



BIRTHS 
CABLE - A son, Amos Lloyd, born January 7 to Ron 
and Fay the Cable of Goshen Indiana. 

MARTIN - A son, Clement Jay, born January 24 to 

Neil and Lois Martin of Nappanee, Indiana. 



CHILDREN'S PAGE 
GOOD FLAVOR 

Often I hear children say, "When I get big I 
want to be a farmer..." or "a mommy." It is great 
to be a farmer or a mommy, but there is something 
greater that Jesus wants you to be. He wants you 
to be a salt shaker. The salt is the Word of God. 
You can sprinkle it over this cold world. Today we 
see men with cold, cold hearts. When people have 
cold hearts, they will do anything to please them- 
selves. One Sabbath day Jesus healed a man with a 
withered hand. A group of men with cold hearts 
tried to find a way to kill Jesus because He healed 
on the Sabbath day. When men do evil things today, 
Jesus tells His children to "please pass the salt." 
Spread it around so the hearts of men will melt and 
be pliable. 

Without salt in the kitchen, the food you eat 
wouldn't taste good. Salt brings out the good 
flavor, and everything tastes yummy. Almost every 
time we sit down to a good meal someone says, 
"Please pass the salt." Next time you put salt on 
your food, think of Jesus. You are putting salt on 
your food to make it better. Jesus wants you to 
sprinkle His salt (His Word) on people to bring out 
the good flavor in them. You can decide that you 
can be a SALT SHAKER FOR JESUS. 

— Everett Oyler 

New Paris, Indiana 

...Have salt in yourselves, and have peace one with 
another. (Mark 9:50) 

NON-PROFIT ORG. -BULK RATE-U.S. POSTAGE PAID-PERMIT#10 

Sonora, CA. 
THE PILGRIM 
19201 Cherokee Rd. 
Tuolumne, Calif 95379 



THE PILGRIM 



VOL. 38 MARCH, 1991 NO, 3 

'Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain 
from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul." / Peter 2:11 



CALVARY COVERS IT ALL 

Far dearer than all that the world can impart 
Was the message that came to my heart; 
How that Jesus alone for my sin did atone, 
And Calvary covers it all. 

The stripes that He bore and the thorns that He wore 
Told His mercy and love evermore; 

And my heart bowed in shame as I called on His name, 
And Calvary covers it all. 

How matchless the grace, when I looked in the face 
Of this Jesus, my crucified Lord; 
My redemption complete I then found at His feet, 
And Calvary covers it all. 

How blessed the thought, that my soul by Him bought, 
Shall be His in the glory on high, 
Where with gladness and song I'll be one,-of the 
And Calvary covers it all. L throng, 

—Mrs. Walter G. Taylor 



THE PILGRIM is a raliojous magazine published in the interests of the members of the 
Old Brethren Church. Subscription rate: $2.00 per year. Sample copies sent free on request. 
Publishing Editor: Leslie Cover- 
Address: THE PILGRIM, 19201 Cherokee Rd., Tuolumne, CA 95379 



DO WE BELIEVE? 

"My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" The 
loud cry of the dying Savior echoed across the 
Judean hills and faded into silence • On the cross 
over His head was the sign giving His accusation in 
three different languages: THIS IS JESUS THE KING 
OF THE JEWS. His blood was flowing from His hands, 
His feet, His head where the thorns bit deeply, and 
His back where the scourge had cut. 

Of the multitude watching the cross, some 
scoffed, and some wept; and one ran to get a sponge, 
filled it with vinegar (or sour wine) and lifted it 
for Jesus to drink. The two thieves, crucified one 
on each side of Jesus, had both been berating Him 
for doing nothing to save them. But then one of 
them began in his agony to plead for mercy. Jesus 
assured him of a place in Paradise. Gracious 
Savior, merciful even as He suffered! 

We cannot justly describe the entire scene. You 
can read it in the four Gospels — for all the Gospel 
writers record these most important events of the 
sufferings, the death, and the Resurrection of the 
Savior. Some tell details that others omit, but all 
harmonize to record an event upon which the future 
of the world and the future of each individual sure- 
ly was depending. 

We cannot contemplate the Savior's death in in- 
difference. It is a place of decision for each one 
who hears the truth of the sacred sacrifice. 
Christendom has disputed "long and loud" over 
whether or not we have choice in this matter of our 
salvation — whether or not His blood washes my sins 
away. We are among those who believe man certainly 
does have a choice, in fact, must choose. God is 
sovereign and has decreed in wisdom beyond ours that 
there is a way man may be saved. That way is 
through the Savior, and there is no other. 



THE PILGRIM 



When we say we beleive that man has a choice, we 
know that it is only within the limits that- God has 
set up* In no way is man sovereign. We cannot 
choose to he anything that God has not made us to 
be. We must choose for the Savior or against Him. 
There is no third or fourth option. We cannot 
decide that we need not choose. And we cannot 
conclude that God has chosen for us and that we 
have no responsibility in the matter. 

Yesterday is gone forever; tomorrow will soon be 
today. The god of this world (Satan) would have us 
believe that this will go on and on. But someday 
Jesus will come, and the opportunities to receive 
Him will be passed. 

Some basic beliefs of the Christian faith are 
that Jesus is the Son of God and He brought from 
heaven a saving Gospel, and that He is coming again. 
This publication, The Pilgrim is set to proclaim 
these truths. We testify this day, as has been told 
over and over to each generation: "For God so loved 
the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that 
whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but 
have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son in- 
to the world to condemn the world; but that the 
world through him might be saved." (John 3:16, 17) 

When Jesus healed the man who was born blind and 
that man got into trouble for giving Jesus honor as 
one from God, he was cast out of the synagogue. 
Jesus found him later and asked him, "Dost thou 
believe on the Son of God?" The man answered "Who 
is he, Lord, that I might beleive on him?" And 
Jesus said to him, "Thou hast both seen him, and it 
is he that talketh with thee." The man said, Lord 
I believe." And he worshipped Him. Something a lot 
like this has to happen to each one of us. God has 
done so much for us. Do we beleive on the Son of 
God? 

At the sixth hour and as the final minutes 
passed when Jesus was to die, the sun began to 
darken. "And there was darkness over all the earth 
until the ninth hour." The earth shook, the rocks 



THE PILGRIM 



rent, the veil of the temple was "rent in twain 
from the top to the bottom." Jesus cried out again 
loudly, "Father , into thy hands I commend my 
spirit." He also said, perhaps with relief and 
resignation as He laid down His life, "It is 
finished." 

Redemption is finished. God has made the way. We 
cannot be undecided and we are without excuse. 
Choose life; choose the Savior. — L.C. 



CEASEFIRE 

It's over I" So proclaimed the headlines of our 
local newspaper. The war in the Persian Gulf area 
is over, and the relief is evident everywhere. It 
is certainly cause for thanksgiving — not specifical- 
ly that the allies won, but that the killing has 
stopped. 

Jesus prophesied of "Wars and rumours of wars , " 
and that "Nation shall rise against nation, and 
kingdom against kingdom, but the end is not yet." 
No doubt more wars will come. Also, it is certain 
that the Christian war is not over. One of our 
hymns by Horatius Bonar says: 

No slacker grows the fight, 

No feebler is the foe 
Nor less the need of armor tried 
Of shield, and spear, and bow. 

The casualties in the Persian Gulf have amounted 
to 80,000 to 100,000 slain of the Iraqis with less 
than 200 deaths of the allies. This, of course, 
does not include injuries. We cannot fathom the 
suffering indicated by these figures. 

Only eternity will reveal the casualty list for 
our Christian struggles. Millions have been mar- 
tyred throughout the ages of the Christian Church. 
However, these are not casualties but rather victor- 
ies. The casualties are those who are not faith- 
ful. -- L.C. 



THE PILGRIM 



CHANGES 

For I am the Lord, I change not; therefore ye 
sons of Jacob are not consummed. Mai. 3:6 

Another year older, a new little daughter, a "bro- 
ther now absent from us here... changes! These are 
a few that took place in our life the past year. No 
doubt you can name a few or many that have come to 
you. 

There are changes all about us. Changes in our 
age and size, changes in the weather and the sea- 
sons. Changes in the lives of those around us. 
Life couldn't go on without changes I Some we are 
glad for, like sunshine after rain, like rain after 
dry weather, like growing up when we were small, 
like the change from a life lived for self to a life 
lived for God I 

But changes can be frustrating. They take ac- 
ceptance and adjustment, such as a change in loca- 
tion when all is new and strange, or leaving the 
shelter of home and taking on the responsibility of 
making a home ourselves. Maybe we have lost a 
friend, a sister, a brother; or a catastrophe of 
fire or storm has ruined our home. There are dis- 
appointing changes like having one you love and 
trusted leave the way of truth. And there are fear- 
ful changes like war and changes in nations. 

Sometimes life seems so uncertain and unstable 
that fear and discouragement begin to cover us . It 
is then we need the light of faith. Faith, that the 
Unchangeable is in control! 

God is everlasting (Psalm 90:2). He will never 
change. In Him is everlasting strength (Isaiah 
26:4), everlasting kindness (Isaiah 54:8), everlast- 
ing light (Isaiah 60:19), everlasting love (Jeremiah 
31:3), and everlasting life (John 3:16). His right- 
eousness and His salvation are forever (Isaiah 
51:6,8). His Word endureth forever (I Peter 1:25), 
and His kingdom shall stand forever (Daniel 2:44)^ 



THE PILGRIM 



God will always be there to listen when we pray. 
He has promised to never leave us nor forsake us 
(Hebrews 13:5) ♦ 

What stability! Having our faith in Him, we can 
surmount disappointments, frustration, and fear. 
We can have His peace and joy in our hearts always. 
We can look forward to a "bright" change sometime, 
the change to a life where no "dark" changes are 
known. 

— Miriam Beery 
Nappanee Ind. 

Holy Savior, Friend unseen, 

Since on Thine arm Thou bids' t me lean, 
Help me throughout life's changing scene 
By faith to cling to Thee. 

Blest with communion so divine, 
Take what Thou wilt, shall I repine 
When, as the branch is to the vine, 
My soul shall cling to Thee? 

What though the world deceitful prove, 
And earthly friends and hopes remove; 
Patient, uncomplaining love, 
Still would I cling to Thee. 

Though faith and hope are often tried, 

1 ask not, need not, aught beside; 
So safe, 30 calm, so satisfied, 
The soul that clings to Thee. 

—Charlotte Elliott 

Sel. by Miriam Beery 



UNCLE ERNEST'S MEDITATIONS 
Hebrews 12:14 "Follow peace with all men, and 
holiniess, without which no man shall see the Lord. 
So we see we need to follow peace in the world, if 
we hope to be accepted into the New Heaven. In 
this life we need to work out our salvation, as 



THE PILGRIM 



none of the faults will be allowed to disturb the 
peace of Heaven. II Peter 3:14: "Wherefore be- 
loved, seeing that we look for such things, be dili- 
gent that ye may be found of him in peace, .without 
spot, and blameless." We must not allow the tempo- 
ral things of this life to disturb our love and 
peace. Satan has already been cast out of heaven. 
And Jesus came and shed His blood to prepare a way 
for us to accept and purify ourselves for a home in 
heaven when God will destroy Satan and this World. 

ANGER 

Ephesians 4:26: "Be ye angry, and sin not: let 
not the sun go down upon your wrath." Verse 27: 
"Neither give place to the devil." Anger is one of 
the most persistant temptations we have. Hatred 
can blind our eyes. If we have love for one 
another, our sight can be restored. The human race 
is very subject to anger and hatred, the cause of 
wars, divisions, mob violence, and much suffering. 
I John tells us if we are angry, we shut ourselves 
off from the light and walk in darkness. So let 
each of us forsake anger and walk together in the 



light of God's Word. 



FIRST LOVE 



In Revelation we find Jesus reproved the church 
at Ephesus, for leaving their "first love." When 
John the Baptist came, his message was "Repent for 
the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand." Several times 
we read where thousands were convicted in their 
hearts and were baptized, and rejoiced to have 
their consciences cleared, believing in Christ and 
receiving the Light of Love. Surely this was their 
first love. If we can have that as our first and 
only love, and keep self and respect of persons out 
of our midst, we will do well. 

— Ernest Wagner 



THE PILGRIM 



BIBLE STUDY 

The Bible Study topic this month was the 
Beatitudes. We read Matthew 5 around the room* 

The first promise is to the poor in spirit. What 
does "poor" in this verse mean? It could mean hum- 
ility. In Luke 6:20 it talks of the "poor" leaving 
out "in spirit." Those that are poor are not proud 
or haughty and therefore find it easier to be 
humble. There is a great blessing waiting for 
those that are poor in spirit: "For theirs is the 
kingdom of heaven." 

Who are they that mourn? We know of many things 
to mourn about. We should have sorrow for sin. And 
a time of mourning most of us know about is when a 
loved one dies. But here again those that mourn 
will receive the blessing of comfort. 

Meekness, the third of the Beatitudes, is the op- 
posite of selfishness. And it is a quality that is 
very necessary to those who inherit the earth. 

As we studied this portion of Scripture, it was 
pointed out that each of these steps or each of 
these blessings leads to another, and altogether 
they would make a godly man. 

"Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst af- 
ter righteousness: for they shall be filled." (V. 6) 
We need to desire truth and hunger for things that 
are right. Everyone has a hunger inside him which 
natural food cannot satisfy. It must be filled 
with God's Word. We should have a craving or desire 
for God's Word like we do for food, if not more so. 
Brother Will told us he used to like green almonds 
and ate them till he was sick. Sometimes we hunger 
for things that are not good for us. We must 
hunger for the right things and those that will 
make us grow. 

The merciful are those that are forgiving. This 
verse is much like the golden rule. We can't be 
merciful without Someone first being merciful to us. 
God is merciful to us. If we show no mercy, no 
mercy will be shown to us. If we are merciful like 



THE PILGRIM 



God is merciful we will also be poor in spirit; we 
will mourn for sin and desire righteousness. 

It seems from verse 8 that only those that are 
pure in heart are going to see God . To be pure in 
heart we must start with Jesus Christ. We play a 
key part in this. We must repent if our hearts have 
become unclean with sin. 

All of these blessings can be ours. But we must 
keep the first part to obtain the last. 

We ran out of time, so we decided to continue 
with the same topic at the next Bible Study. 

— Peter Cover 



COMMUNION NOTICE 

We, the members of the Eastern congregation of 
the Old Brethren Church, have appointed a Lovefeast 
and Communion for April 27 and 28, the Lord willing, 
at our meeting house near Wakarusa, Indiana. 

A hearty welcome is extended to all our members 
and friends to attend. Melvin Coning 



ADDRESS CHANGE 
Neil Martin 69621 CR. 17 New Paris, IN 46553 

(219) 831-5695 



Never alone in the darkness, 
Always — His comforting hand, 
Touching — so gently, with kindness. 
Helping us understand. 
Sharing our sorrow and sadness, 
Giving us faith to believe 
With us in triumph and gladness, 
Always His blessings receive. 
Graciously granting forgiveness 
When, for our sins He atoned, 
Walking beside us forever, 
Leaving us never alone. 

sel. by Susan R. Coning 



10 THE PILGRIM 



??QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS?? 

QUESTION: Jesus said "Give not that which is holy 
unto the dogs neither cast ye your pearls before 
swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and 
turn again and rend you." (Matthew 7:6) Who are 
the dogs and the swine? 

— Everett Oyler 

ANSWER: We might also ask what is "that which is 
holy" and your "pearls"? The Savior here is speak- 
ing about our holy and precious things and wasting 
them on those who will not appreciate them but will 
rather destroy them and turn on us. Surely He is 
comparing wicked men to dogs and swine. These do 
not appreciate the things that are holy and precious 
to God's children. The words of warning and the of- 
fers of salvation from the Word could be safely and 
wisely given to this kind of man. But to try to 
teach an unconverted, ungodly man the precious 
psalms and beatitudes, the assurances and church 
pratices, would be a waste. To sing our beautiful 
hymns would be unwise in some situations for in- 
stance, in a bar full of carousing men. To send 
our children to amusements or theaters — to place 
them under the influence of ungodly teachers or 
baby sitters — to allow our young folks to work at 
any public business where they would be subject to 
temtation or exploitation could well be casting our 
pearls before swine. The "cigar store" is just a 
step on the way to the bar—all the more dangerous 
because minors can go there. 

But let us not use this verse as an excuse for 
failure to testify to unbelievers of our faith in 
Jesus. — L # C* 



THIS MONTH'S QUESTION: What does the Scripture Gal- 
ations 5:24 mean? How do we go about crucifing the 
flesh? Does it happen at once and for all? See 
Gal. 5:13 and Gal. 5: 19-21. _ A Sister in Christ 



Ptsttfrtotl 



11 



JOHN NAAS'S LETTER 
( — continued from last issue) 

The 30th, the last mentioned man again lost a 
child and it was buried at sea that night. Then we 
saw the first little fish with wings flying over 
the sea for two or three rods. 

On September 6th in the morning the First Mate 
spiked a dolphin, which are quite different from 
what they are pictured in Germany. This day we had 
much heat and little breeze. 

The 7th, another big fish was caught by the crew, 
which is called shark. The crew took a hook, which 
was very large and strong and of about a finger's 
thickness; to this they fastened one and one-half 
pounds of bacon. When they saw the fish near the 
ship's side they threw the hook with the bacon to 
him, which he swallowed at once, and since the fish 
was very thick and five feet long and of great 
strength in his tail, as well in as out of the 
water, they drew him into the ship with a very hard 
pull. They drew back all the people, so that it 
should not hurt anybody, as he struck the deck so 
powerfully with his tail that if he should have hit 
any one against the legs, those would certainly have 
been struck in two. But after the ship's carpenter 
had cut off his tail with his axe after ten i. rces, 
his strength was all gone. His mouth was so big 
that he might have swallowed a child of two years. 
The flesh the Captain ordered to be distributed to 
the delighted people... 

The 13th a young woman, who had always been in 
poor health, died in childbirth and was buried at 
sea on the 14th with three children, two of them 
before and now the third the one just born, so that 
the husband has no one left now. 

On the 16th in the morning about four o'clock a 
woman fifty years of age died; she had not been well 
during the entire trip and always repented leaving 
her native place. She was buried at sea that day. 



12 THE PILGRIM 



And since the trip, owing to the many changes of 
wind, had lasted somewhat long and the greater num- 
ber of the people had all consumed their provisions 
and their expectation was always set upon six weeks 
from land to land, they had gone on eating and 
drinking hard, from morning until late at night. 
Then at last they found it a great hardship to live 
on the ship ' s fare alone ; thus the greater number 
so entirely lost courage that they never expected 
to get on land again - 

On the 17th a small landbird, which they call 
the little yellow wag-tail in Germany, perched down 
several times on our ship, that the people could 
have a good look at him. This caused great rejoic- 
ing among them, that they clapped their hands with 
joy. 

On the 18th a ship from Rhode Island came up to 
us. It had a cargo of sheep and other things, in 
order to sail to Vest Indies, which our Captain 
spoke to through a speaking tube; after they had 
made their arrangements they reefed their sails on 
both the ships, since there was but little running, 
anyhow and our Captain had a boat lowered into the 
water and rowed with four seamen to their ship. 
When they had drunk the welcome together, he re- 
turned and brought with him half a bag of apples, a 
goose, a duck, and two chickens and distributed the 
beautiful apples at once among the people. That 
caused great rejoicing to get such beautiful Ameri- 
can apples on the high sea, and those which were 
still left over he threw among the people to grap- 
ple for them, and they fell in heaps over one ano- 
ther for the beautiful apples. 

On the 19th, a strange looking fish came upon 
the ship. It was shaped like a large round table 
and had a mouth like two little shallow baskets. 
The same evening a large number of big fish came 
from the north towards our ship and when they had 
reached the ship they shot down into the deep, in 
front, behind and under the ship, so that one could 



THE PILGRIM 13 



not see them any more on the other side of the ship. 

On the 20th again a young married woman died and 
was huried at sea the same night , and on this 
evening again came a large number of countless big 
fish from the north which one could see from high 
above the water and which did just like the former, 
that one could not see them on the other side of 
the ship. Thereupon we had a very heavy fall of 
rain so that some people caught half kegs of water, 
only from the sails and from the Captain's cabin. 
This was followed by a powerful windstorm from the 
northwest. The sea rose up so high, that when one 
looked into it, it was just as if one were sailing 
among high mountains all covered with snow; and 
one mountain-wave rose over the other and over the 
ship so that the Captain and First Mate and the 
Cook were struck by a wave that they kept not a dry 
thread on them; and so much water poured into the 
ship that many people's beds, which were near to 
the holes were quite filled with water. The holes 
were hastily boarded up, the rud- der bound fast, 
and the ship was, with a very lowly- reefed sail set 
sideways to the wind, so that it should not roll so 
hard on both sides. The storm lasted the entire 
night with great violence, so that without any fear 
one could well see that it was not alone the sea- 
worthiness of the ship that it could weather such 
powerful blows, but that it was preserved in the 
Almighty hand of the Lord, in order to make known 
to man His might. To Him be above all and for all 
the glory, Amen* 

Not a human being remained on deck, but one sail- 
or who was tied fast in order to watch by the rud- 
der; all the rest, the Captain, the mates, the sea- 
men crawled into their beds in their wet clothes, 
and the ship lay sideways to the wind always on its 
side so that it drew water all the time, which how- 
ever, poured out again. At midnight the waves 
struck so hard against the portholes aft, that two 
boards sprang away from the windows where part of 
the people lay in sleep and slumber, and the water 



14 THE PILGRIM 



rushed in through the window, as big as it was, and 
straight into the beds, which caused a great terror 
to those who lay near the window. The water took a- 
way a board together with the rope; we all sprang up 
because the friends who lay near the window had not 
tied the board fast enough and the misfortune might 
have become a very great one. We took a woolbag, 
which was handy, and stopped the window up and the 
other one with the board, that was made fast again. 

The ship's carpenter the next morning made a new 
window board. The storm also abated a little, and 
thus the anxiety of the people grew a little less, 
and towards two o'clock in the afternoon it cleared, 
the wind ceased, and the portholes in the ship were 
opened, and it was beautifully calm weather. Then 
the Captain quickly ordered a kettle of rice to be 
boiled, in order that the people might get something 
warm to eat that day and night for their supper. 

The 22nd at noon the ship lay as still as a 
house; then the people dried their clothes again. A 
good breeze sprang up at dinner time and blew all 
night, so stiff and so steady that one did not know 
in the ship that was moving and yet made two miles 
and a half in one hour. At midnight the first 
sounding was made, 150 rods deep, and no bottom 
found. 

The 23rd at nine o'clock another sounding was 
made and at 55 rods ground was struck, at eleven 
o'clock at 35 rod; shortly after, 20 rods; and yet 
we did not see any land, but were nearing the river 
(Delaware). Then the people became very joyful on 
account of the good breeze and the ground being 
found. But the Captain did not trust himself to 
reach the river by daylight; since one could not 
see any land even, and at four o'clock in good wind 
he reefed the sails, and had the rudder tied fast, 
because there are many sandbanks in front and inside 
of the river. (To be continued) 



Taken from A HISTORY OF THE BRETHREN 
by Martin Grove Brumbaugh- 



YOUTH PAGE 
THE CHRISTIAN'S FIGHT 

I will not fear the devil 

Nor anything he throws, 
For all of him is evil 

As every child of God knows 

He can never harm me 

As long as I do rest 
Within my Master's loving arms 

Where I will e'er be blest • 

Doubts and fears may rise 
To those who fear the Lord, 

But ever do be wise, 

And conquer with the Sword. 

Temptations may come and go, 
And winds of trouble roll, 

But this one thing I know: 
We are safe within His fold. 

So let us all be faithful 
To what we know is right; 

Heaven is our eternal goal 
When we have won the fight. 
— Peter D. Cover 

I LOVE HIM MORE EACH DAY 

He loved me when nobody cared; 
His mercy with me He shared. 
He gave me all He could give. 
Yes, He died that I might live I 

And you ask me how much I love Him. 
Well, its more than words can say. 
I love Him with each passing moment. 
I love Him more each day! 

— Martha Wagner 

Gettysburg, Ohio 



CHILDREN'S PAGE: KINDNESS PAYS 

Peter was a Meimonite preacher living in a vil- 
lage in Switzerland with his wife. All Christians 
were being persecuted. People in the village could- 
n't understand why Peter and his friends did not go 
to war. They had been threatened with death, but 
they would reply, "We would rather die the bitterest 
death than to disobey God." One night three young 
men set out to do evil to this "Peace Preacher." 
When they arrived at the house, one man said, "Now 
we will see what kind of man he is. Maybe he won't 
be so loving after our visit tonight." The roof was 
made of big leaves called thatch. The men quickly 
lifted themselves on to the roof, and started throw- 
ing the thatch to the ground. 

Peter awoke. He could hear strange noises on the 
roof. Quietly he went outside. He could see the 
men busy at work destroying his thatch. Peter asked 
God for help to do the right thing to these men. 
Peter told his wife to prepare a meal for the work- 
ers. When the meal was ready, Peter went outside 
and called, "You have worked long and hard. Surely 
you are hungry. Come in and eat with us." Slowly 
they came into the house and sat down at the table. 
Peter bowed his head and prayed earnestly and lov- 
ingly for his guests and his family. When prayer 
was over, the men raised their heads in shame. 
They could hardly eat. Suddenly they went back out- 
side and onto the roof. This time they were putting 
the thatch back on instead of taking it off. 

Jesus wants us to learn the important lesson to, 
"Love our enemies and do good to them that hate us." 

— Everett Oyler 

Adapted from Coals of Fire by Elizabeth Bauman 

NON-PROFIT ORG. -BULK RATE-U.S. POSTAGE PAID-PERMIT#10 

Sonora, CA. 
THE PILGRIM 
19201 Cherokee Rd. 
Tuolumne, Calif 95379 



THE PILGRIM 



VOL. 38 APRIL— MAI, 1991 NOS. 4 £ 5 

'Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain 

from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul." / Peter 2: ft 



THEREFORE GIVE US LOVE 

Gracious Spirit, Holy Ghost, 
Taught by Thee we covet most, 
Of Thy gifts at Pentecost, 
Holy, heavenly love. 
Love is kind, and suffers long; 
Love is meek and thinks no wrong; 
Love than death itself more strong; 
Therefore give us love. 

Faith and hope and love we see, 

Joining hand and hand, agree; 

But the greatest of the three, 

And the "best, is love. 

Faith will vanish into sight; 

Hope be emptied in delight; 

Love in heaven will shine more bright; 

Therefore give us love. 

From the overshadowing 
Of Thy gold and silver wing, 
Shed on us who to Thee sing, 
Holy, heavenly love. 
Prophecy will fade away, 
Melting in the light of day; 
Love will ever with us stay; 
Therefore give us love. 

— Christopher Wordsworth 



THE PILGRIM is a religious magazine published in the interests of the members of the 
Old Brethren Church. Subscription rate: $2.00 per year. Sample copies sent free on request. 
Publishing Editor: Leslie Cover: 

Address: THE PILGRIM, 19201 Cherokee Rd., Tuolumne, CA 95379 



AFTER CALVARY 

On March 29 f 1991 > there was attention given to 
an event that happened centuries ago. The calendar 
calls that day "Good Friday." Perhaps, though, "Bad 
Friday" would be a better name, for on that day in 
approximately the year A.D. 29> the Jews rejected 
their Messiah and crucified Him. Though it was 
determined "from the foundation of the world," fore- 
known of God, and resulted in salvation for any and 
all who would believe, still the responsibility of 
the nation and of men in general was tremendous. 
What would God do? What would be the result of 
such uncaring thanklessness? 

For the Jewish people, the result was the loss 
of their favored position with God. Jesus told the 
"Chief priests and elders of the people" (Matthew 
21:23-46) after the parable of the vineyard, "There- 
fore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be 
taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth 
the fruits thereof." (v. 43) This nation to which 
the kingdom is given is the holy nation of redeemed 
people. (See Romans 10:19 and I Peter 2:9*) Jesus 1 
words in this parable of the slaying of the heir to 
the vineyard are so plain that it would be difficult 
to misunderstand or misapply them. 

The destruction of Jerusalem seems to be another 
result of the rejection of the Saviour. What the 
people of that city endured is gruesome to read. 
The Roman general Titus eventually destroyed the 
city and burned the temple. Josephus records, 
"...Yet hath not its great antiquity, nor its vast 
riches, nor the diffusion of its nation over all 
the habitable earth, nor the greatness of the 
veneration paid to it on a religious account, been 
sufficient to preserve it from being destroyed." 
(Page 588, Josephus , Kregel Publications) 



THE PILGRIM 



Concerning the temple and the holy place there, 
the account says (Mark 15:38), "And the veil of the 
temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom" 
when Jesus died. This no doubt signified the end 
of the old priesthood and the opening of the way 
into the holiest place in heaven where Jesus entered 
with His own blood as the Jewish high priest had 
done with animal blood in the earthly temple. (See 
Hebrews 9) So another result of that awful day was 
the redemption Jesus accomplished for us in which 
our sins are washed away by His own blood and we 
poor mortal creatures are made kings and priests 
unto God. 

For Jesus' followers, the result of Calvary and 
His succeeding resurrection and ascension was 
Pentecost. The Church was begun. The disciples 
were given power and went forth to preach the Word 
with great boldness and zeal. Many souls were 
saved and added to the Church. The rejection of 
the Saviour became victory and the ushering in of 
God's plan for bringing many souls to glory. 

Seeing these results, though so briefly touched 
upon, gives us a view of the matchless power and 
wisdom of God. These events were no surprises to 
Him, but contributed perfectly to His plan to 
rescue man from the fall. 

So what are the results of Calvary in our 
lives? Is the event so far away in distance and 
time as to be meaningless in our modern and inde- 
pendent, pleasure-seeking society? The world is 
still crucifing Jesus and will always reject Him. 
But for all who will repent, and believe, and obey 
Him, God has new life and peace. 

Springtime symbolizes this new life in Christ. 
The old wintertime releases her grip on the earth, 
and new plant life springs up in vigor and beauty. 
The cows are turned into new pasture. The birds 
return and build their nests. Joy of nature is all 
around us. But this is only a symbol of what can 
happen in our hearts when "old things are passed 
away; behold all thing are become new." 



THE PILGRIM 



Praise God for forgiveness and peace! All this 
comes because Jesus died and rose again and lives 
forever to be our Saviour. — L.C. 



UNCLE ERNEST'S MEDITATIONS 
MAKING DECISIONS 

Psalm 139:23: "Search me, God, and know my 
heart: try me and know my thoughts: and see if 
there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the 
way everlasting . " Luke 22:31,32: "Simon , Simon , 
behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may 
sift you as wheat: But I have prayed for thee that 
thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, 
strengthen thy brethren." So these Scriptures 
should prepare us for the trials we face in this 
life. 

PEACE 

Peace cannot be forced. Proverbs 27:22: 
"Though thou shouldest bray a fool in a mortar 
among wheat, with a pestle, yet will not his 
foolishness depart from him." Jesus told Pilate 
"...If my kingdom were of this world, then would my 
servants fight..." So we cannot join in with the 
covetous nations of this world, and fight. 

HOLY GHOST BAPTISM 

Matthew 3:11-12: "I indeed baptize you with 
water unto repentence: but he that cometh after me 
is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to 
bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, 
and with fire: whose fan is in his hand, and he 
will throughly purge his floor, and gather his 
wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the 
chaff with unquenchable fire." So we see the Lord 
will burn out the dross that none is carried over 



THE PILGRIM 



into the new Kingdom. It appears the water clean- 
sing in the flood was not enough to remove evil. 
It requires the cleansing of each individual. 
Hebrews 12:7: "If ye endure chastening, God 
dealeth with you as with sons..." 

OUR PRESENT TIME 

Genesis 11:6: "And the Lord said, Behold the 

people is one and they have all one language; and 

this they begin to do: and now nothing will be 

restrained from them which they have imagined to 

do." We are living in a time when, by the use of 

electricity, men have suceeded in bringing the world 

together, as one nation by interpretation of all 

language to attain to the same state as they were 

when building the tower of Babel, and are following 

their imaginations. I believe this explains why 

the world powers are called beasts, and not called 

by certain nations. „ , TT 

J -Ernest Wagner 

Modesto , California 



BIBLE STUDY 

We have been studying the Sermon on the Mount 
for Bible Study here lately. We ended with verse 
eight in Matthew 5 but we had some good discussion 
on it this time also. 

Verse eight talks of the pure in heart. The 
pure in heart are those that are sincere and are 
living a life with a free conscience • We don't 
have pure hearts naturally. God makes pure hearts 
if we want Him to, and He will help us keep them 
pure. Proverbs 4:23 tells us that a pure heart 
leads to a pure life. This blessing also has an 
interesting and captivating promise. We shall see 
God and in new bodies. What a glorious state those 
with pure hearts have to look forward to I 

The peacemaker talked of in verse nine is more 
than just a pacifist. We have seen and heard that 



THE PILGRIM 



pacifists are far from peaceful at times. A peace- 
maker is willing to intervene, maybe at his own 
expense, willing to suffer wrong to see peace. 
Peacemakers are not just peace-watchers. We must 
be witnesses to this sinful world not only by 
having peace among ourselves but also to work for 
peace between others. The ultimate Peacemaker is 
Christ Jesus. He made peace between God and man 
and wants peace to rule in our hearts. This 
promise tells us that we will not only see God but, 
closer yet, we will be His children. 

Verse ten and eleven both speak of persecution. 
We hardly know what this is as far as enduring it 
in the body. But we are told that all that will 
live godly, will suffer persecution. (II Timothy 
3:12) This would show that there is a persecution 
that would not be in bodily form. Verses to look 
up on this subject are I Peter 4:13 and Acts 
7:52-60. Job suffered persecution as did Jeremiah 
and many of the prophets to Israel. According to 
tradition Isaiah was "sawn assunder" Many had to 
give their lives in both the Old and New Testaments. 
Throughout the history of the Church, many have 
suffered martydom for the Lord. "Rejoice and be 
exceeding glad: for great is your reward in 
heaven..." (Verse 12) 

Verse thirteen tells us that we are to season 
the earth with the goodness we have been given from 
above. Salt flavors and preserves food, and salt 
is always salty. But salt can also become diluted 
till it is not good. May we ever guard the salt we 
have and keep it from being diluted in sin. 

Verses fourteen through sixteen show us what 
kind of witnesses we should be. A light on a dark 
night shines brightly. The light that we have in 
ourselves is the good works we have been given. 
They come from God and they are to glorify Him. 

— Peter Cover 



To know God is the highest education we can have. 

— Selected 



THE PILGRIM 



??QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS?? 

QUESTION: What does the Scripture, Galatians 5:24, 
mean? How do we go about crucifying the flesh? 
Does it happen at once and for all? See Gal. 5:13 
and Gal. 5:19-21. 

— A Sister in Christ 

ANSWER: Galatians 5:24 is an absolute statement 
that the true Christian has rejected the works, 
lusts, and manifestations of the flesh. This dying 
to sin, "crucifying the flesh," is a deciding 
factor in Christian conversion. This takes place 
in the process of faith, repentance, and baptism. 
It is the pivotal point in the Christian's life. 
The person from this time forward no longer serves 
sin but loves and serves the Lord. Read Romans 6. 

— Joseph Wagner 
ANSWER: 
Dear Sister in Christ, 

The works of the flesh and the fruit of the 
Spirit are attitudes that control outward behavior 
and speech. So if we want to have proper godly con- 
duct, we go deeper than outward behavior. We must 
crucify attitudes and desires of the flesh mention- 
ed in Galatians 5:19-21. Colossians 3:5 says, 
"Mortify (destroy the strength, vitality, or func- 
tioning of, subdue, or deaden) therefore your mem- 
bers which are upon the earth; fornication, un- 
cleaness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, 
and covetousness, which is idolatry." The things 
mentioned in these two Scriptures describe the 
ugliness of the selfish nature of man and must be 
crucified before the fruit of the Spirit can have 
free course in our lives. 

Jesus said, "If any man will come after me, let 
him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and 
follow me." When Jesus took up the cross He was 
crucified on, it was with the realization that He 
was giving up all that was dear to self and was 



8 THE PILGRIM 



ready to pour out His life even unto death, for the 
sake of the world, and the will of God. This is 
the cross we must bear, and it must be daily. 

Man will deny himself of many comforts and 
conveniences before he will deny himself of self. 

Crucifixion is a slow, painful death — yes, a 
life-long work. Apostle Paul says, "I die daily." 
Just the same, a man that is crucified is consider- 
ed a dead man. Romans 6:11 says, "Likewise reckon 
ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but 
alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord." 

Paul says in Galatians 2:20, "I am crucified 
with Christ: Nevertheless I live; yet not I, (self) 
but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now 
live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of 
God..." 

When Jesus was asked which was the greatest com- 
mandment in the law, Jesus said, "Thou shalt love 
the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all 
thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first 
and great commandment. And the second is like unto 
it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. On 
these two commandments hang all the law and the 
prophets." 

Paul says, "Let nothing be done through strife 
or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each es- 
teem other better than themselves. Look not every 
man on his own things but every man also on the 
things of others." (Philippians 2:3>4) 

If we live these Scriptures "by the faith of the 
Son of God," then self will be denied and the 
fleshly desires crucified. — Thomas Royer 

ANSWER: To crucify the flesh is to not allow our 
sinful inclinations to work. Colossians '3:5 says 
to mortify. .. (the sinful deeds of the flesh) which 
means to control by self-denial. Galatians 5:16-18 
reveals that it is a constant, on-going battle in 
this life; but if we fill our lives with the fruit 
of the Spirit, we will not lose our control over 
the flesh. --Meredith Cable 



THE PILGRIM 



ANSWER: We believe the apostle Paul answers this 
question in various Scriptures* Romans 7:24-25: "Oh 
wretched man that I ami Who shall deliver me from 
the body of this death? I thank God through Jesus 
Christ our Lord..." Romans 8:13: "For if ye live 
after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through 
the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye 
shall live." Romans 6:17-18: "But God be thanked, 
that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obey- 
ed from the heart that form of doctrine which was 
delivered you. Being then made free from sin, ye 
became the servants of righteousness." Galatians 
5:16: "This I say then, walk in the Spirit , and ye 
shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh." 

Again we believe the apostle Paul has the answer 
for the second question, "Does it happen once and 
for all?" Philipians 3:8-14: "Yea doubtless, and I 
count all things but loss for the excellency of the 
knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have 
suffered the loss of all things, and do count them 
but dung, that I may win Christ, And be found in 
him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of 
the law, but that which is through the faith of 
Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: 
That I may know him, and the power of his resurrec- 
tion, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being 
made conformable unto his death; If by any means I 
might attain unto the resurrection of the dead. 
Not as though I had already attained, either were 
already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may 
apprehend, that for which also I am apprehended of 
Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have 
apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting 
those things which are behind, and reaching forth 
unto those things which are before, I press toward 
the mark for the prize of the high calling of God 
in Christ Jesu3 . We believe this question is a 
concern of all true believers. 

In Christian Love, 
Kenneth Martin 



JOHN NAAS LETTEE (CONTINUED) 

Early in the morning all sails were set again^and 
we headed for the river although the breeze was not 
very favorable, and there was a heavy fog. Then a- 
gain they made soundings and found 15 rods, and an 
hour later 7 rods. At twelve o'clock we saw the 
land with great rejoicing. Towards half past four 
we neared the river, for one is still six hours 
away from it when one gets in sight of it. Mean- 
while, I and the Captain caught sight of three 
boats sailng towards us; then the Captain cried, 
"These are the pilots or steersmen." One could 
hardly see them among the waves. Then he had all 
the sails set and was very glad that the pilots 
came to meet him. The first one who came he did 
not accept, but when the second came, whom he knew, 
he took him into the ship at once, intending to 
sail into the river that same night \ however, when 
we were on both sides against the land just in 
front of the river, suddenly from the southwest a 
storm broke loose such as we had never had yet. 
Then all had to help reef the sail, and the anchor 
was thrown out for the first time. There we lay 
fast, and the water had no longer such great power 
because it had not more then 7 rods of depth. So 
we lay at anchor all night and the storm soon 
ceased. 

The 25th, early in the morning, we weighed 
anchor, set sail, and tacked into the river. We 
saw there on both sides with so much joy as can 
easily be imagined, the land and the beautiful 
trees near the shore just as if they had been 
planted there. 

On the 26th the before mentioned last born baby 
died and was buried in the river. That same day 
during the night we sailed into the narrows of the 
river, which is indeed very delightful to see, as 
wide as the Rhine where it is the widest, and on 



THE PILGRIM 11 



both banks are the most beautiful woods and groves 
and here and there houses stand on the banks which 
have fish nets hanging to dry in front of them. 

The following day, the 27th, we passed New Castle 
with little breeze and in a very dense fog. This 
town lies forty miles distant from Philadelphia. 
Since we had very little wind we had to sail mostly 
with the tide or with the current of the water, 
therefore we sailed during the 28th, and on the 
afternoon of the 29th we arrived safely in 
Philadelphia. 

We were met by brethren and sisters in small 
boats who brought us fine bread, apples, peaches 
and other refreshments of the body, for which we 
gave thanks to the Highest publicly on the ship 
near the city, with singing and ringing shouts of 
delight. With many tears we praised and glorified 
the Lord for having preserved us in his Father's 
hand, and having carried us as on the wings of the 
eagle so that we all could meet again in love on 
this side of Eternity. See, dear children, brethren 
and friends, this is in short the description of 
our journey across the very big sea. 

If I were to relate everything how things went 
with the people on the ship, there could be much 
more to write, and it grieves my heart, when I 
remember that I so often told them when on the ship, 
I did not think that all the unclean spirits of Hell 
there could be worse going on with cursing, swear- 
ing, blaspheming and beating (fighting), with over 
eating and drinking, quarreling day and night, 
during storm and weather, that the Captain often 
said he had taken many people over to this country 
already but had all his days never seen anything 
like this. 

He thought they must have been possessed by the 
demons (devils). Therefore they made such a good 
picture of Hell, although to us they were all very 
kind, friendly and helpful and they held us all in 

great fear. The Captain often threatened he would 
order some of them to be bound to the mast and to be 



12 THE PILGRIM 



whipped by his sailors from head to foot; still they 
remained bad. 

Now I will report some more experiences in regard 
to the great danger and hardships of the journey to 
Pennsylvania. 

The danger of this journey is this: if God should 
be against one and were willing to work His revenge 
and justice against us, no one, of course, could 
escape from Him, as little as on land. Another 
danger would be if one went in an old bad ship upon 
the big sea, or with a ship master who was a tyrant 
or ignorant of sailing. But, if the Lord is not 
against us, which must first be settled, and one 
has a good ship and good sailors then the danger is 
not half so great as one imagines it. The Lord sus- 
tains Earth and Sea and one in and on the other, 
therefore also the vessels upon the sea and those 
who have gone up on high or down into the deep, and 
the eternal Jehovah has rescued them, they all 
shall come to Him and shall praise the name of the 
Lord who does great wonders to the children of men. 

The hardships, however, of this journey consist 
of many kinds and things; but for myself I have not 
to say of many, on the contrary of but few hard- 
ships on this trip; but others have seen and expe- 
rienced a great deal, especially firstly when 
people start on this trip who are not obliged to 
enter upon so great a journey. 

Secondly, when people start this enterprise 
without any reason, and sufficient deliberation and 
for the sake of material purposes. 

Thirdly, when people break up to move, and 
especially married people, when they are not fully 
agreeing with one another to begin such a long 
journey. 

These three things are the main reasons of all 
difficulties on the long journey, for I can say 
with full truth that on six or seven ocean vessels 
I have heard of few people who did not repent their 
journey, although according to the declaration of 
the greatest number only extreme necessity had 



THE PILGRIM 13 



driven them to it. Although there were a good num- 
ber of educated people among them, yet it was with 
them too, on account of the sad decline in their 
business affairs by the hard oppression of govern- 
ment, that caused them to leave or to become poor, 
and as poor people they could no longer help them- 
selves from getting into debt and becoming beggars. 
Nevertheless they so much regretted having started 
on this journey that some became sick of it and were 
so furious that often they did not know what they 
were doing. Neighbors accused one another. Hus- 
band, wife, children fought bitterly. Instead of 
helping one another, they only added to the burden 
of each and made it every hour more unendurable. 
Seeing that such people are obliged to be pent up 
together for thirteen, fourteen or fifteen weeks, 
what an amount of trouble must follow with such 
natures! Then one can never do what one wants on a 
ship. Then there are some who will consume all the 
food thay have taken with them while the ship's 
fare is still good; this they will throw into 
water. But later on when the ship ' s fare has long 
been lying in the salt, the water grows foul smel- 
ling, so that rice, barley, pease, and such can no 
longer be boiled soft in it, then the people have 
devoured and drunk everything they had and then 
necessity compels them to begin with the poorer 
stuff and they will find that very hard; and be- 
cause the people live so closely together some will 
then begin to steal whatever they can get, especial- 
ly things to eat and drink. Then there are such 
quantities of lice on the people, that many persons 
are compelled to louse for a whole day at a time, 
and if one does not do this very frequently they 
might devour one. This was a very great hardship 
for the people and for me as well. 

Now that we have safely arrived in this land and 
have been met by our own people in great love and 
friendship all the rest has been forgotten in a 
moment (so to speak), for the sake of great joy 
that we had in one another. This hardship has last- 



14 THE PILGRIM 



ed about nineteen weeks; then it was over, wherefore 
be all the glory to the Highest: Amen, yea; Amenl... 

I will make an end of this and wish patience to 
whomsoever reads this. God be with you all. Amen. 

— John Naas. 

Condensed from A HISTORYOF THE BRETHREN 



by Martin Grove Brumbaugh. 



ANNUAL MEETING NOTICE 

The Annual Meeting of the Old Brethren Church 
will be held, the Lord willing, on May 17, 18, and 
19 at the Salida, California, meeting house. Friday 
will be council day; on Saturday and Sunday 
(Penecost), there will be public preaching; and on 
Saturday evening, the Communion service. A hearty 
invitation and welcome is extended to all our 
members and friends to attend. 

— Joseph L. Cover 



BAPTISMS 

We of the Salida Congregation were all happy and 
rejoiced with the angels when Sam Cover chose to 
follow the Master and received Christian baptism on 
Sunday, April 14- May he be faithful and helpful 
in God's kingdom. — Joseph L. Cover 

Again we, the members of the Wakarusa Congrega- 
tion, rejoiced that souls are still responding to 
the call of the Master. Emily Brubaker received 
Christian baptism upon confession of her faith in 
Christ, May 5* May she be true to Jesus and enjoy 
the blessing of salvation forever. 

— Melvin Coning 



BIRTH 
ROYER — A daughter, Janita Ruth, born April 11 to 
David and Elva Royer of Goshen, Indiana. 



THE PILGRIM 15 



FOR YOUTH 

Hmmm* . • 

You ask, "How you doing?" and I say, "Just fine. 1 
Yet is it true of this heart of mine? 
Outwardly I may look O.K. 
But under my skin, is it also this way? 

Sunday at meeting, with Bible in hand 

I gather with part of the faithful band. 

Bible in hand, yes it's a good start, 

But is that pure Word down deep in my heart? 

I sing Zion's songs, messages true; 
Truly my praise is the Saviour's due. 
Now's a good time to feel heaven below. 
Or else do I think, we're singing too slow? 

"Let us pray," comes the call, and down I go, 
My knees on the floor, my head bowed low, 
A time to give thanks, repent and confess — 
Or fret about so and so's lengthiness? 

Dear Lord, You know me inside and out; 
My problems most people know nothing about; 
Forgive me, renew me, grant me a new start. 
But most of all, Lord, come live in my heart. 

— Lloyd Wagner 

Modesto , California 



True worth is in being, noi seeming. 

In doing each day that goes by 
Some little good, not in dreaming 

Of great things to do by and by; 
For whatever men say in their blindness. 

In spite of the fancies of youth, 
There's nothing so kingly as kindness 

And nothing so royal as truth. 
—Alice Gary 



CHILDREN'S PAGE 
SPRING IS HERE 

"For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over 
and gone; The flowers appear on the earth; the time 
of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of 
the turtle is heard in our land." (Song of Solomon 
2:11-12) 

Many years ago God had promised that after 
every winter there would be a spring when every- 
thing would come back to life . Sometimes , before 
the snow is off the ground, we see flowers blooming. 
We all feel better when we can be outside and work 
in the earth. Nice warm weather also brings re- 
sponsibilities to us. The farmers need to keep 
busy to plant their crops. Mother is busy planting 
the garden. I hope you children are also helping. 
When you learn to work at a young age, you will be 
happier. The Bible says that if a man does not 
work, he shouldn't eat. We all like to eat, so we 
need to be willing to work where we can. 

Remember the story of the little red hen? No 
one wanted to help plant the seed, harvest the 
wheat, grind the flour, make the dough, or bake the 
bread . When the bread was ready to eat , everyone 
wanted to help. The little red hen said, "No! 
You wouldn't help with the work, so you can't eat 
any." Even though this is a make-believe story, it 
has a good Biblical teaching. Children, let's help 
with the work; then when the bread is ready to eat 
we can all enjoy it. 

-Everett Oyler 
Nappanee , Indiana 

NON-PROFIT ORG. -BULK RATE-U.S. POSTAGE PAID-PERMIT#10 

Sonora, CA. 
THE PILGRIM 

19201 Cherokee Rd. 

Tuolumne, Calif 95379 



THE PILGRIM 



V0I <- 38 June, 1991 



Ho. 6 



'Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain 
from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul." i Peter 2:11 



THE ROCK THAT IS HIGHER THAN I (PSALM 61:2) 

Lead me to the rock that is higher than I, 
The rock that is steadfast and sure, 
A stumbling block and a rock of offense 
To all that is wrong and impure. 

Lead me to the rock with its crystal stream, 
A rock in a dry, thirsty land, 
Where all who thirst may be satisfied. 
Where the stream of life has no end. 

Lead me to the rock where the church of God 
Forever will stand secure; 

Though the. tempests rage and the rain beats down, 
There the church will forever endure. 

Lead me to the rock where my soul may rest, 
A calm in the midst of a storm, 
Where the troubles of earth will never reach, 
Where nothing will ever alarm. 

Lead me to the rock when the end time comes, 
To the cleft where my soul may hide 

While the river of Jordan onward rolls, 
Where my soul may forever abide. 

— Annie Baker 



THE PILGRIM is a religious magazine published in the interests of the members of the 
Old Brethren Church. Subscription rate: $2.00 per year. Sample copies sent free on request. 
Publishing Editor: Leslie Cover; 

Address: THE PILGRIM, 19201 Cherokee Rd., Tuolumne, CA 95379 



WAITING 

"Whenever I am in town, I have to wait at nearly 
every place I go." So proclaimed my wife after a 
frustrating day of shopping and business. I proved 
it too, when I made an appointment to have the 
brakes fixed on our van. It was to take "about an 
hour." But the job had some complications. The 
parts had to be picked up. And I waited for nearly 
three hours. 

Waiting strains the Christian virtue of patience. 
Many times waiting can be avoided. To be sure, it 
is often a waste of time, and time is valuable. But 
when it cannot be avoided, then we need to exhibit 
that useful Christian fruit, longsuffering or 
patience. 

I pity those elderly ones who are in states of 
helplessness. Their waiting (and patience) makes 
mine look easy. I can read or walk or shop or pass 
time in conversation with others. Many elderly ones 
can do none of these things. The hymn says: 
Only waiting till the shadows 

Are a little longer grown; 
Only waiting till the glimmer 

Of the day's last beam is flown... 

Those who are waiting in this way need company. 
It makes the waiting time go quickly when we can 
spend it with loved ones. Those also who must wait 
through a crisis — surgery or extreme illness — in 
their family, appreciate friendship then. How 
sensitive are we to the needs of one another? 

If we think we have too much waiting to do, what 
do we think about God's patience with us? Peter 
recorded that "...the longsuffering of God waited in 
the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing ... " 
God has exercised patience with His people through 
centuries of man's disobedience. Jesus was tempted 
in all points as we are, and we can believe He was 



THE PILGRIM 



tempted in this area, too. He was here as a man 
over thirty years, waiting for the time to come when 
He would accomplish the atonement for sin and could 
return to glory. Now we are to "Wait on the Lord: 
be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine 
heart: wait, I say, on the Lord." (Psalm 27:14) 

Our culture does not teach us to wait 
patiently. It is said about Americans, "They 
hurry up and run so they can relax." In some other 
countries, the pace is more leisurely; appointments 
are not so precise. It is no wonder that heart 
attacks, stress, and nervousness plague our society. 

Some people are skilled at making every move 
count. They fill spare minutes with some kind of 
activity. In fact, there are never enough minutes. 
Time will soon run out» Paul writes, "The time is 
short." John tells us, "My little children, it is 
the last time." James says, "Be ye also patient; 
stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord 
draweth nigh." Peter writes, "But the end of all 
things is at hand..." Jesus said, "In your 
patience possess ye your souls." 

There are good things we can do as we wait. (I 
write, not from victorious experiences, but from 
what I know would be good for me.) One can pray. 
We sometimes run out of time when we pray. But here 
is time on our hands. God hears when our hearts 
reach to Him, even if we are not on our knees. 

Some have the forethought to take reading mater- 
ial. Donating blood usually means a long wait. We 
see some reading their books, apparently oblivious 
to all the commotion around them. 

Those who enjoy conversation can give a useful 
testimony as they show their appreciation for God's 
goodness. Here is a good time to guard against our 
natural tendency to complain about the weatherJ 

Young people need patience as they grow to 
maturity. I remember thinking that the day would 
never come when I would be a man. Our teachers 
would urge us to enjoy the freedom of youth while 
we had it. But young people seldom see it that way. 



THE PILGRIM 



To them the adult state is the ideal. Marriage is 
something to work toward. But there is something 
greater than marriage. That is maturity in the 
Christian sense. The attainment of this maturity 
does not happen over night. It takes patient striv- 
ing. But the rewards of maturity are victory in 
every field — again victory in the Christian sense. 
It means close communion with the Savior. And if 
God grants privileges of this life — like marriage — 
maturity is the essential preparation for it* "When 
we "Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteous- 
ness," we can be sure that the things of earth will 
be in their proper perspective in our esteem. 

A number of our younger couples are planning to 
build homes or establish farms. This takes hard 
work and a special amount of patience to obtain 
permits, zoning, or to repair buildings. We want 
this all to happen in good time. But usually pro- 
cesses drag on and on, and our patience wears thin. 

Work to do is a special blessing we should be 
glad for. The unemployed have a lot of waiting to 
do. People in impoverished lands are pictured 
sitting by the hour just waiting for something to 
happen. May we be thankful for the useful activity 
in our lives. And when we do have to wait, may we 
do it with patience and conduct ourselves as 
Christians, for many are watching God's people. 

—i.e. 

COMMON, COMMUNING, COMMUNICATIONS 

"Oh, the comfort — the inexpressible comfort- 
Of feeling safe with a person, 
Having neither to weigh thoughts 
Nor measure words — but pouring them 
All right out — just as they are — 
Chaff and grain together- 
Certain that a faithful hand will 
Take and sift them — 
Keep what is worth keeping — 



THE PILGRIM 

And with the breath of kindness 
Blow the rest away*" 

— Dinah Maria Mulock Craik, "Friendship 1 



This little poem expresses the value of being 
open with one another, of being able to pour out 
our hearts, to bare our souls to our brother. To 
the listener it expresses the value of doing just 
that — listening — putting all our energies into 
understanding this brother, catching every word, 
feeling his emotion, seeing his vision. And then, 
lovingly and gently we counsel him, dispelling the 
"chaff." 

Have you ever tried to speak to someone that was 
not really listening, that's listening with half an 
ear, just impatiently waiting for you to finish so 
that he can say his more important speech? Or, 
have you ever tried to speak with someone with a 
high education and high-classed living? You just 
can't communicate, in the full sense of the word. 
(We CAN with the help of the Spirit.) 

We find that communicate, commune, and common 
all have similar origins and are rather closely 
related. They all speak of sharing, imparting, 
making common. 

The Apostle Paul gives us some valuable examples 
and insights on this subject. First, an example of 
communicating to someone in a position of leader- 
ship with existing opinions (educated): "And I went 
up by revelation, and communicated unto them that 
gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, BUT PRIV- 
ATELY to them which were of REPUTATION, lest by any 
means I should run, or had run, in vain." (Gal 2:2) 

First, notice that he had a revelation — an uncover- 
ing, something was divinely revealed to him — so he 
was well prepared. Next, he preaches to them of 
reputation PRIVATELY, a one-on-one basis. Why did 
he do this? Surely it was because he knew he would 
have a greater concentration to those God was 
directing him to. He wanted a successful 



THE PILGRIM 



mission, and he did everything he knew of to have a 
complete communication with these people. 

We find another insight in Gal.6:6: "Let him that 
is taught in the word communicate unto him that 
teacheth in all good things." Here is a mission to 
teachers who, with their good reputation and perhaps 
large audience, could proclaim the good news of 
Jesus Christ to more people. A teacher can't teach 
unless he has knowledge of his subject, and who 
would be a better teacher than the seasoned teach- 
er, full of experience and valuable lessons? So, a 
necessary element of communication is knowledge of 
His Word (wisdom), but also being fully and com- 
pletely in His Holy Spirit. In our first example, 
we see Paul was completely in touch with God; he 
had a complete communication with his Lord. This 
is the only way God can reveal anything to us; we 
must be able to hear His voice that speaks to us 
through His Spirit. In this way we CAN have the 
inspiration, the power, the purpose, and the 
knowledge to go forward. 

Communication is for everyone, a necessary skill 
to learn. "By him ( Jesus) therefore let us offer 
the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, 
the FRUIT OF OUR LIPS giving thanks to his name. 
But to do good and to COMMUNICATE forget not: for 
with such sacrifices God is well pleased." (Heb. 
13:15,16) To praise God and give Him thanks is one 
purpose of communication. I like that term, "the 
sacrifice of praise." How can praise be a sacri- 
fice? In Romans 12 we read that our bodies are a 
"living sacrifice." Praise is certainly a result of 
being "acceptable unto God;" acceptance which we ob- 
tain through consecration and sacrifice to God. I 
don't think praising God seems like a sacrifice to 
the one who knows Him. It is a sacrifice through 
denying our selfishness; we could say that we praise 
God instead of exalting ourselves. Take note that 
this praise is to be offered CONTINUALLY, which 
would encompass every aspect of our lives. "To do 
good and communicate forget not: for with such sac- 



THE PILGRIM 



rifices God is well pleased." Don't forget this! 
Communication is a REQUIREMENT, an essential item 
for brethren. 

We find another aspect of communication in Eph. 
5:19* "Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns 
and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in 
your heart to the Lord." The one who knows God is 
filled with the Spirit, which causes an overpowering 
joy that is "best expressed through singing. When 
we sing, we are expressing ourselves to one another 
and to the Lord. See also Col. 3:16, Mt. 26:30, 
Acts 16:25, Heb. 2:12, Rev. 14:3 • 

Another aspect of communication is found in III 
John 9-11 . This is a sad account of a brother who 
puffed himself up, who had a high regard for him- 
self, who sought the preeminence. The key words 
can be found in v. 10: ". . .prating against us with 
malicious words: and not content therewith..." 
This man was unwilling to listen, and notice what 
class this placed him in: "Beloved, follow not 
that which is evil . . ." (v. 11) 

We're all familiar with the verse in Malachi 
3:16, "Then they that feared the Lord spake OFTEN 
one to another..." Now notice what the Lord thought 
of this: "and the Lord hearkened (attended to 
them), and heard it, and a book of remembrance was 
written before him for them that feared the Lord, 
and that thought upon his name." Timothy was in- 
structed that they be "willing to communicate." (I 
Ti. 6:18) The Phillippians were commended for their 
communication: "Notwithstanding ye have well done, 
that ye did communicate with my affliction." (Phm. 
4:14) Love and concern compell communication. 
Knowledge, commonness, joy, anger, and sorrow (Lk. 
24:17 [be sure to look this up and read vv. 13-35]) 
all compell communication. Philemon gives us an ex- 
ample that faith compells communication: "That the 
communication of thy faith may become effectual by 
the acknowledging of every good thing which is in 
you in Christ Jesus. For we have great joy and con- 
solation in thy love, because the bowels (hearts or 



THE PILGRIM 



inward parts) of the saints are refreshed by thee, 
brother." (Phm. 6,7) These "saints" were 
experiencing a great common union through loving 
communication by the efforts of a brother willing 
to express his great faith. He was unable to 
resist because his faith was so great and he had 
sacrificed his selfishness to God. What an example 
for usl 

Another aspect of communication is found in Mt. 
5:37: "But let your communication be, Yea, Yea; 
Nay, Nay: for whatsoever is more than these cometh 
of evil." He is simply saying to tell the truth. 
If you are not sure something is true, then don' t 
say it. We might say that gossip "cometh of evil," 
for more times than not it turns out to be twisted 
into untruth. "Let no corrupt communication proceed 
out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use 
of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the 
hearers." (Eph. 4:29) 

Let's look at another apostle. John in his first 
epistle lovingly intreats, "My little children, 
these things write I unto you, that ye sin not." 
(2:1) His love and concern was so great that it 
compelled him to write I This is another important 
aspect of communication. "I write unto you, little 
children, because your sins are forgiven you for his 
name's sake." (2:12) Wouldn't it have been easy for 
John to think, "They know that; I don't need to tell 
them!" "...I write unto you, little children, be- 
cause ye have known the Father. I have written unto 
you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from 
the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, 
because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth 
in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one." 

(2:13,14) All of these verses (and there are more) 
express John's concern, love, and joy and give them 
encouragement. If these were written to you , 
wouldn't they give you great encouragement? 
Wouldn't they comfort you? Writing this cost John 
a little bit of time, but I'm sure it was well worth 
it. "I have not written unto you because ye know 



THE PILGRIM 9 

not the truth, but because ye know it...»" (2:21) 
low, what excuse do we have for not writing? 

There seems to be a certain art to communication. 
Some are good at writing. Some are good at listen- 
ing. Some are good at speaking. I believe each of 
' these can be learned and should be learned by every- 
j one. We've seen how essential it is. Paul had a 
sincere desire "...that I may open my mouth 
BOLDLY..." (Eph. 6:19); and "...that therein I may 
speak BOLDLY, as I ought to speak. "(v. 20) We could 
change that to "write BOLDLY, as I ought to write" J 
Paul knew his source of power; simply by relying on 
the Holy Spirit he found that "...utterance may be 
given unto me. . • "(v. 19) Let's take this invaluable 
example so that our mouths, fingers, and ears may be 
useful, fruitful tools for the enhancement of His 
Kingdom. It takes BOLDNESS! 

How vital communication is! How vital listening 
is! Speaking and listening are equally important. 
We should be talkers as well as listeners, writers 
as well as readers! We can learn a lot from listen- 
ing, and we can give a brother or sister enormous 
support and comfort simply by listening. Let's at- 
tend to uhese examples and apply them to our lives 
daily. We can experience the deep, total, common, 
communing communications that all Christians should 
have. Just one more exhortation from Paul: "And I 
was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much 
trembling. And my speech and my preaching was not 
with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in DEMON- 
STRATION of the SPIRIT and of POWER: That your 
faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in 
the POWER of God. Howbeit we speak wisdom among 
them that are perfect :.. .we speak the wisdom of God 
in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom. .. "(ICor. 
/ 2:3-7) "Bless the Lord, ye his angels (brethren), 
\ that excel in strength, that do his commandments, 

hearkening (attending) unto the voice of his word." 
(Ps. 103:20) 

— Ron Cable 

Goshen, Indiana 



10 THE PILGRIM 



UNCLE ERNEST'S MEDITATIONS 
A Precious Promise 

Hebrews 11:39,40: "And these all having obtain- 
ed a good report through faith, received not the 
promise: God having provided some better thing for 
us, that they without us should not be made per- 
fect*" So we see how highly favored we are to have 
the record of the faithful ones that have gone be- 
fore us, to reveal all the trials and temptations we 
may face in this life, to help us overcome. 

Repentance 

The message Jesus brought was "Repent: for the 
kingdom of heaven is at hand. Repent ye, and be- 
lieve the Gospel." God has no pleasure in destroy- 
ing wicked people, but He wants them to turn from 
their evil ways and come back to serve and obey Him. 
We have a very good example in the book of Jonah. 
God created us for His pleasure and wants to save us 
if possible, but He needs to free us from sin. 

Correction 

Hebrews 12:6: "For whom the Lord loveth, He 
chasteneth, and scourge th every son whom He receiv- 
eth." Revelation 3:19: "As many as I love, I re- 
buke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and re- 
pent." Ecclesiastes 4:13: "Better is a poor and a 
wise child than an old and foolish king, that will 
no more be admonished." So we see we never reach a 
state that we need no correction or help in this 
life. 

Good and Evil 

Matthew 10:34: "Think not that I am come to send 
peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a 
sword." (V. 36) "And a man's foes shall be they of 



THE PILGRIM 11 



his own household." There can be no compromise be- 
tween good and evil. I Thessalonians 3*3* "That 
no man should be moved by these afflictions: for 
yourselves know that we are appointed thereunto." 
II Corinthians 4:17: "For our light affliction, 
which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more 
exceeding and eternal weight of glory." Revelation 
7:14: "...These are they which came out of great 
tribulation; and have washed their robes, and made 
them white in the blood of the Lamb." We hope to 
live with this great company when we leave this 
life. 

Love 

God created man with the desire to love and be 
loved, to feel that love for God, for his wife, for 
children, for his Church, and fellow men, but Satan 
tempted them to follow vanity and desire to satisfy 
self. So we have a need to deny all selfish desires 
and follow the pure desire we were intended to be 
governed by. 

— Ernest Wagner 

Modesto , California 



PARADOX 

If the Good God were suddenly 

To make a solitary Blind to see, 

We would stand wondering all 

And call it miracle; 

But that He gives with lavish hand 

Sight to a million souls we stand 

And say, with little awe, 

He but fulfils a natural law. 

Huw Menai 



12 THE PILGRIM 



OBITUARY 

ISAAC BAKER, the oldest child of Jesse and Sophia 
(Smith) Baker, was born June 18,1897, near Maple, 
in Vaughan Township, Ontario, Canada. He passed 
away peacefully at Parkview Home on May 25,1991, in 
his 94th year. 

On September 26, 1928, he was married to Annie 
Reesor who passed away February 6, 1963* 

He is survived by one son; Alvin Baker of Blue- 
vale; 3 daughters: Mary — Mrs. Norman Drudge of 
Markham; Ruth — Mrs. Lome Reesor of Maple; Eva — 
Mrs. Herb Diller of Markham; 17 grandchildren; and 
28 great-grandchildren. 

Also surviving are one sister, Bertie, and one 
brother, Amos, both of Maple. His brother Abraham 
predeceased him in I960. 

In 1940, Isaac and Annie were baptized into the 
Old Brethren Church and remained faithful until the 
Lord called them Home. Isaac had enjoyed unusually 
good health for over 90 years. 

Isaac, a saddler, operated his own harness-making 
business for most of his life. His tidy shop 
sraelled of leather, and his meticulous workmanship 
reached into many nations of the world. Neighbors 
would stop in for an emergency repair or for some- 
one to talk to. 

Funeral services were held May 28 in the Heise 
Hill Brethren in Christ Church, Gormley, Ontario, 
with Pastor Marlin Ressler opening. Words of hope 
and comfort were given by Elder Kenneth Martin, us- 
ing Psalm 90 and Hebrews 9:27. 

The body was laid to rest with that of his wife 
and ancestors at the Baker Cober Cemetery near 
Maple, Ontario. 



And God shall wipe away all tears from their 
eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither 
sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more 
pain. . . — Revelation 21:4 



Pfetorttal 



13 
Peter Becker, 1687-1758 

To Peter Becker, more than to any other person, 
is the credit due for the successful organization 
of the Church of the Brethren in America. 

He was horn at Delheim, Germany. Like Alexander 
Mack, he was raised a Reformed. He joined the 
Brethren at Creyfeld, where he was called to the 
ministry. He was greatly grieved over the division 
at Creyfeld, due to the course taken by Christian 
Lihe. This was perhaps the leading cause for his 
organizing the emigration party to America. He and 
his people landed at Philadelphia in the fall of 
1719. 

Peter Becker was the leading spirit in America 
for ten years. He made the first pastoral visit in 
1722. He officiated at the first baptisms, council 
and love-feast in 1724* He was chosen the first 
elder of the Germantown church, over which he pre- 
sided for more than twenty years, part of the time 
with Alexander Mack. He was the first home mission- 
ary and organized the first churches in 1724* He 
stood firm and true to the church in the great Beis- 
sel Schism. He personally ministered to many of 
these pioneer Brethren settlements, and through his 
faithful preaching many were brought into the church 
and remained faithful. "He was perhaps the most 
gifted singer and the most eloquent man in prayer 
in the colonial church. He was not an effective 
speaker, but he was of sound judgement, great moder- 
ation and sufficient tact to manage successfully the 
mighty burdens laid upon him. 11 

He was married to Anna Dorothy Partman. To this 
union were born two daughters: Mary, who married 
Rudolph Harley; and Elizabeth, who married Jacob 
Stump. They have many descendants in the United 
States today. He was a weaver by trade. At Ger- 
mantown he owned a small farm. In 1746, his wife 
died and he went to live with his daughter Mary. 
He spent the last twelve years of his life in the 
Indian Creek Church. —HISTORY AND DOCTRINES of 
the CHURCH of the BRETHREN by Othd Winger 



14 THE PILGRIM 



FOR YOUTH 
BIBLE STUDY 

Ve are studying the Sermon on the Mount for our 
Bible Studies here in California. We read Mat. 7* 

The Sermon on the Mount is for the church today. 
Its blessings go further than to the Jews that 
heard it. This portion of Scripture deals with a 
lot of different subjects and the more familiar we 
can be with it, and the rest of the Scriptures as 
well, the better we can stand for the right when we 
are questioned. 

Although we read the seventh chapter, we mainly 
discussed the subject of prayer which is taught in 
the sixth chapter. 

Brother Will brought it to our attention that in 
order to have a good prayer life we must first be- 
lieve the greatness of the One to whom we are pray- 
ing and have faith that He is there and that He 
hears us. Prayer taps the power that is able to do 
anything in God's will. Prayer is our link with God 
through Jesus Christ. (See Ephesians 3:13-21 and 
Romans 8:26,27) 

Why do we pray? Because from God we can find 
strength, and He will supply our needs. 

A devoted prayer life takes persistence. And 
the more we use prayer, the more it develops into 
the most needful part of our daily life. 

How can we have a more devoted prayer life? We 
must realize that we are praying through Jesus 
Christ. We cannot expect the Lord to answer prayer 
if we are not living in His will. Therefore, to ask 
for forgiveness and to plead for mercy in our fail- 
ings should be part of prayer. 

We should be grateful to God for how great He is 
and be thankful for His mercy and the many blessings 
He gives us. 

To have a devoted prayer life, we must have our 
mind completely in tune with God. To just rattle 
off a simple prayer and go our way is not from the 



THE PILGRIM _____ 15 



heart. Our Saviour speaks against this in Matthew 
6:5* 

We should cultivate spontaneous prayer in our 
lives. We don't have to be on our knees or by our 
beds to come before God. A simple "Thank You, 
Lord," sent from the heart in times of gladness, is 
heard. "Help me, Lord," in times of weakness, is 
also heard and answered. — Peter Cover 



GOD IS ALWAYS THERE 

Sometimes when paths get rough, 
And you stumble to your knees, 
Just truly have faith in God, 
For He knows your every need. 

The world comes crashing down, 
And it tears your life apart, 
But our God is watching you; 
You must feel it in your heart. 

You may be discouraged, 
And may think that no one cares, 
But, friend, you must remember 
That our God is really there. 

Just pray to our Father 
That He will forgive your faults — 
That He'll take you to Heaven 
When your life comes to a halt. 

— Linda Blocher 
New Paris, Ohio 



MARRIAGE 

ROYER--C0VER Samuel Royer and Rosanna Cover were 
married May 25 at Tuolumne, California. 

] New address: 28772 CR. 44, Rt. 4 
"' ; ."""' , Nappanee, Indiana 46550 

(219) 862-2659 



CHILDREN'S PAGE: WILLING TO PAY THE PRICE 

One time a rich young man came to Jesus and ask- 
ed what he should do to have eternal life. I be- 
lieve this young man thought he would do anything 
Jesus asked of him. Jesus told him he must sell all 
he had and give to the poor. This was too much for 
him. He thought he couldn't do it, so he went away 
very sad. This young man, like many men today, are 
wanting something great but not willing to pay the 
price. 

Once a woman was gathering sticks for a fire to 
make a cake for her and her son. Vhen the cake was 
gone they would die, because it hadn't rained for a 
very long time and food was scarce. Elijah asked 
the woman for a little water and a small cake. 
What would you do if a stranger wanted you to share 
your food, and you knew there wouldn't be any more? 

Elijah told her if she made a small cake for him 
first the meal (flour) and oil would not run out. 
She did as Elijah said, and there was enough meal 
and oil to make bread for many months until the 
famine was over. 

As you children get older in life, I hope you 
never expect to get something for nothing. It is 
true that the salvation of God is a free gift, 
bought for us by Jesus. However, for our daily 
lives Jesus said we should give our best to others 
and expect little in return. 

What a contrast in these two stories I The rich 
young man wouldn ' t listen to Jesus so he went away 
very sad. The woman listened to God and she and her 
son had enough to eat for many months. Also, they 
were happy. Jesus said, "If ye know these things, 
happy are ye if ye do them. 

— Everett Oyler 

4 

NON-PROFIT ORG. -BULK RATE-U.S. POSTAGE PAID-PERMIT#10 

Sonora, CA. 
THE PILGRIM 
19201 Cherokee Rd. 
Tuolumne, Calif 95379 



THE PILGRIM 



V0L - 38 •* July, 1991 No. 7 



'Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain 
from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul." / Peter 2.tt 



We Rest on Thee 

We rest on Thee, our shield and our defender! 

We go not forth alone against the foe; 

Strong in Thy strength, safe in Thy keeping 

tender, 

We rest on Thee, and in Thy name we go. 

Yea, in Thy name, Captain of salvation 
In Thy dear name, all other names above; 
Jesus our righteousness, our sure foundation, 
Our Prince of glory and our King of Love. 

We go in faith, our own great weakness feeling, 
And needing more each day Thy grace to know; 
Yet from our hearts a song of triumph pealing: 
We rest on Thee, and in Thy name we go. 

We rest on Thee, our shield and our defender! 
Thine is the battle; Thine shall be the praise; 
When passing through the gates of pearly splender, 
Victors we rest with Thee through endless days. 

—Edith G. Cherry 



THE PILGRIM is a religious magazine published in the interests of the members of the 
Old Brethren Church. Subscription rate: $2.00 per year. Sample copies sent free on request. 
Publishing Editor: Leslie Cover 

Address: THE PILGRIM, 19201 Cherokee Rd., Tuolumne, CA 95379 



The Principal Thing 

A riddle: What is something better to get than 
gold and better than rubies; something for lack of 
which folks die; something we can obtain by being 
reproved and punished; something better than 
strength, better than weapons, and is called "the 
principal thing"? It is wisdom. 

When we think of wisdom, we automatically think 
of Solomon, the wisest man of his time. But in 
spite of his many wise decisions and choices and 
the wisdom expressed in his writings, there were 
some things lacking in his life and some choices 
which were decidedly unwise. So we might conclude 
that although Solomon was granted great wisdon from 
God, he did not always follow it. 

What then is true wisdom; how would we define 
it? Perhaps our best definition can come from 
exploring the life of a man who both had the true 
wisdom and also let it control his life . That man 
is the first Christian martyr Stephen. 

The context of this man's life was the early 
church in the throes of developement and 
expansion. The issue of the times was Jesus 
Christ . The Jews were still smarting from the 
truth of the Gospel which Jesus preached, establish- 
ed, and died and rose for. His life had made an 
impact never to be forgotten. Jerusalem and Israel 
could never be the same. The battle was pitched, 
and the Lord was working out His plan which had 
been determined from the foundation of the world. 

Into this arena of battle stepped Stephen. The 
twelve apostles needed helpers. People were 
complaining that things were being neglected. 
Rather than leave their most important work of 
preaching the Word of God, the apostles had the 
brethren choose seven men who could help with the 
physical work of ministering to the needs of the 



THE PILGRIM 



new congregation at Jerusalem. Today we would 
probably call them deacons. The first of these was 
Stephen, "a man full of faith and of the Holy 
Ghost." The apostles prayed and laid their hands 
on them, and they began their work as leaders in 
the Church. 

"And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great 
wonders and miracles among the people." (Acts 6:8) 

The reaction to this active, faithful worker was 
immediate, and those who reacted were full of 
resentment. Jerusalem, as the center of Judaisam, 
contained Jews from many regions — undoubtedly 
learned men promoting the cause of Israel. They 
may have been congregated in Jerusalem for the very 
purpose of resisting or stamping out completely 
this new sect which was making such progress. The 
account says they were of "the synagogue of the 
Libertines, and Cyrenians, and Alexandrians, and 
them of Cilicia and of Asia." (Cilicia was the 
region of Tarsus. This group very likely included 
Saul of Tarsus.) They arose and began "disputing 
with Stephen." 

One would think that Stephen would be no match 
for such a group of learned Jews, but this was not 
the case. The word says, "And they were not able 
to resist the wisdom and the spirit by which he 
spake." Stephen evidently had this true wisdom and 
was led by the Holy Spirit. Here is something more 
than knowledge. 

Sometimes we tend to equate knowledge with 
wisdom. Proverbs 1:7 says, "The fear of the Lord 
is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise 
wisdom and instruction." Then 9:10 says, "The fear 
of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and the 

knowledge of the holy is understanding." Both are 

valuable, but they are not the same. 

William Cowper, the hymn writer, wrote: 

"Knowledge and wisdom, far from being one, 
Have oft times no connection. Knowledge dwells 
In heads replete with thoughts of other men; 



THE PILGRIM 



Wisdom in minds attentive to their own. 

Knowledge, a rude, unprofitable mass, 

The mere materials, with which Wisdom builds, 

Till smoothed and squared and fitted to its 

place, 

Does not encumber whom it seems to enrich. 

Knowledge is proud, that he has learned so 

much; 

Wisdom is humble, that he knows no more." 

Christians are not opposed to true education. 
The condition of many of the colleges and univer- 
sities of today make them hazardous environments 
for young Christians— especially those not firmly 
established in the faith of Jesus Christ. But true 
education can be a useful tool in the Christian 
life. However, may we remember that the true wisdom 
is not obtained by education. If it were, the Jews 
would not have had difficulty with Stephen. 

Lacking the power to resist the wisdom of 
Stephen, the Jews "suborned (bribed) men, which 
said, We have heard him speak blasphemous words 
against Moses, and against God." They treated 
Stephen like they treated Jesus. They brought him 
before^ the council. There as they looked on him 
they "saw his face as it had been the face of an 
angel." 

Stephen was not lacking in knowledge. Acts 7 
gives the record of his defense before the council. 
He gave detail after detail of the history of his 
people beginning with Abraham. Perhaps he was 
proving that he was not a blasphemer but a true 
worshipper of God — one who was aware of God's acts 
in the human history and particularly in the 
history of His own people. Finally he charged them 
with being "stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart 
and ears." In eloquent terms he declared them the 
children of those who persecuted the prophets and 
the actual betrayers and murderers of Jesus, "the 
Just One." 



THE PILGRIM 



We may think Stephen was not too wise to 
confront these leaders so pointedly. But this is 
part of the wisdom by which he spoke. He was 
proving the truth of the words spoken centuries 
later in our own time by Jim Elliott, also martyred 
in Christian service : "A man is no fool to give 
what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose." 
Stephen gave his life to gain the life eternal in 
the presence of God. 

So what is wisdom? How do we obtain what 
Stephen had? James says (1:5) t "If any of you lack 
wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men 
liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be 
given him." James also defines this wisdom; "But 
the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then 
peaceable, gentle, and easy to be entreated, full 
of mercy and good fruits without partiality and 
without hypocrisy. (3:17) If we wish to know how 
wise we really are, let us go over this definition 
point by point and we can tell. Are we pure? 
peaceable? gentle? etc. I am sure we will 
conclude that we need the grace , forgiveness , and 
Holy Spirit of God to be this way. 

Finally, consider the promise of God in a 
prophecy of Daniel (12:3) regarding the 
resurrection: And they that be wise shall shine as 
the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn 
many to righteousness as the stars for ever and 
ever." — L.C. 



ENCOURAGE ONE ANOTHER 

Did you know you have been given an important 
job to do? You may not be the president, a 
minister, a teacher, or some other prominent 
person, but you have an important position, 
none-the-less: that of being an encouragement to 
others. "But encourage one another daily. .. "(Heb 
3:13 NIV) 

The dictionary says encourage means "to inspire 
with courage." We tend to think of those who are 



THE PILGRIM 



undergoing trials as those who need to "be 
encouraged, ^and they do. But don't we all need 
encouraging? It takes so little to "make my day" : 
a phone call, a letter, a thank you, a smile, a 
word of praise, etc. It doesn't take great talent 
or wealth to do these things, so why aren't we more 
free with them? Encouraging others is a good way 
to encourage ourselves also, it seems. Wouldn't 
"practice makes perfect" also apply to being an 
encouragement to others? 

"... But let us encourage one another..." 

(Heb 10:25 HIV) 
— Elva Royer 

Goshen, Indiana 



THE WILDERNESS JOURNEY 

It is not the great achievement of the Red Sea 
crossing by Moses and the Israelites that is so 
stupendous and miraculous. The awesomeness of the 
Wilderness Journey is the fact that approximately 
three million people were sustained for forty years 
in a small, dry, fruitless desert. Have you 
thought of what it must have been like to merely 
exist from day to day with every human means for 
survival out of reach? Let us look at a few facts 
to see how impossible it would have been for Moses 
and his people to rely upon their own means of 
subsistence : To get through the Red Sea in one 
night they had to have a space at least three miles 
wide, so they could walk 5,000 abreast, If they 
walked double file, it would have been 800 miles 
long, and it would have taken them 35 days and 

nights to get through. At the end of each day of 
the journey they would have needed space two- thirds 
the size of the state of Rhode Island for them to 
camp. This would have been a total of 750 square 
miles. The amount of food for consumption alone is 
absolutely astounding when you consider the fact 
that they were traveling in a country where there 



THE PILGRIM 



was no abundance of natural food to be found. Just 
the amount needed to keep from starving would have 
added up to 1,500 tons a day. But to feed them the 
way we would eat, it would take at least 4,000 
tons. Just to haul it would take two freight 
trains each a mile long. At today's prices it 
would cost $4 million a day! Then consider the 
amount of water required for barest necessities of 
drinking and washing dishes each day. It has been 
calculated that they would have to have 11 million 
gallons every single day. Think of the gigantic 
task of hauling water. It would have taken a 
freight train with tank cars, 1,800 miles long! 

Now Moses may or may not have had to do the 
figuring for managing the survival of his people, 
but God surely knew the cost! It may be more 
easily understood why Moses hesitated to be the 
great emancipator of God's enslaved people if he 
had any inkling as to what an immense chore there 
was before him. We do know for a surety that he 
knew the land, its seasons and size. But God was 
the Provider, not Moses. The requirement for him 
and the multitude was to proceed day by day. God 
supplied for just one day at a time. To think that 
they did not even have to transport their food and 
waterl God took care of them — and for 14,600 days. 

— Selected by Mrs. Kenneth Martin 



Uncle Ernest's Meditations 

SELF DENIAL 

Luke 9:23; "If any man will come after me, let 
him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and 
follow me." How different from the teaching and 
influence we oppose here in the world, where all is 
the opposite, to develop self, and satisfy our- 
selves! God condemned the Jews for covetousness. 
The world cannot have peace because of covetousness. 



8 THE PILGRIM 



CONFIDENCE IN CHRIST 

Philippians 1:6: "Being confident of this very 
thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you 
will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ" Man 
needs something to put confidence in. God said, 
"It is not good that the man should be alone," and 
gave him a wife. But man needs a spiritual anchor 
for his soul. If he turns away from God, he will 
make idols or imagine vain things to glorify 
himself. 

JESUS' PROMISE 

In John 14, Jesus gave us a great promise. We 
that have lived in this world a normal lifetime, 
know that many of our plans fail to meet our 
expectations. But I believe the promise of Jesus 
will far exceed anything we can even find in this 
life to compare it with. There will be no disease, 
thorns , thistles , weeds , but all good as God 
planned for the Garden of Eden. As we think back 
on life there are times we think we would like to 
live over; but we try to forget the worrisome times 
that went with it. 

THE LAST DAYS 

II Timothy 3:1: "This know also, that in the 
last days perilous times will come." Then Paul 
describes the difference between the Godly and 
ungodly. Democracy sounds fair and equal, but it 
leads men to think what the majority imagine to do 
is all right. This attitude displeased God at the 
Tower of Babel. This same attitude of thinking 
there is no God they are to obey, causes the beast 
powers to rise out of the multitude of nations. 
This same attitude of thinking caused the beast 
powers spoken of in Revelation. 



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LIFE OR DEATH 

Philippians 1:21: "For to me to live is Christ, 
and to die is gain." We find in this chapter, Paul 
discusses one of the great problems older people 
face. We would like for older ones to live on and 
on, that they might he an encouragenmet to us. But 
should they suffer for our sakes? For the last ten 
years I have lived where this problem is faced 
daily by many. We can only say, "The will of the 



Lord be done." 



-Ernest Wagner 



WHAT IS A LIE? 

Revelation 21:8: "But the fearful, and unbeliev- 
ing, and the abominable, and murderers, and whore- 
mongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all 
liars, shall have their part in the lake which burn- 
eth with fire and brimstone: which is the second 
death." 

A popular newscaster is reported to have made 
the statement, "The first casualty of war is truth." 
Is the government under the same moral responsi- 
bility as an individual? We know that God allows 
governments to go to war to defend themselves, yet 
forbids this for (Christian) individuals. Whether 
or not war time security demands withholding inform- 
ation and twisting the truth that is reported 
through the news media, we leave to those much 
wiser than ourselves. 

What is important is what this means for individ- 
uals. Is it a lie to only tell part of a truth? 
Are there times that we must withhold information 
to protect individuals? Is it ever right to with- 
hold information to protect ourselves? In the book 
of Joshua chapter two we have a very interesting 
account that deals with our second question. 



10 THE PILGRIM 



Starting at verse three we read, if And the king of 
Jericho sent unto Rahab, saying, Bring forth the 
men that are come to thee, which are entered into 
thine house: for they be come to search out all 
the country. And the woman took the two men, and 
hid them, and said thus, There came men unto me, 
but I wist not whence they were: And it came to 
pass about the time of shutting of the gate, when 
it was dark, that the men went out: whither the 
men went I wot not: Pursue after them quickly; for 
ye shall overtake them. But she had brought them 
up to the roof of the house, and hid them with the 
stalks of flax , which she had laid in order upon 
the roof. 

Rahab not only withheld information, she actual- 
ly lied! Yet in Hebrews 11:31 and James 2:25 she 
is commended for her actions. This is one of the 
mysteries within Holy Scripture that we, perhaps, 
can not fully fathom. It certainly does not excuse 
outright lying. Perhaps all it says is that God 
can take something evil and make something good out 
of it. It may have something to say about judging 
ourselves before we judge others. Yet we must be 
very careful when we use this illustration to teach 

that a lie is less of a sin than putting life in 
danger. 

Many of us often say something in jest that is 
the very opposite of the truth. Is this a lie? If 
we are kind to a brother to his face and then talk 
about him behind his back* are we living a lie? 

Many lies about our Lord Jesus Christ come from 
the pulpits of the land. To deny the virgin birth, 
the miracles, the resurrection and other truths is 
to lie. This should be of far greater concern to 
us than any untruths that may come from civil 
government. 

— James M. Hite 

Palmyra , Pennsylvania 



OBITUARY 11 

RUTH ELIZABETH WOLF, daughter of David and Elsie 
(Crist) Wolf, was born May 4, 1921, near Rio Oso, 
California. Ruth's earthly pilgrimage of 70 years 
and 24 days were spent as a handicapped person, and 
through her affliction she portrayed by her expres- 
sions, love and appreciation to those who assisted 
her in word or deed. 

In 1924 , the family moved to near Modesto, 
California. Ruth's father passed away in 1949, her 
mother in 1979 , and from then on she was lovingly 
cared for by her sister Viola. 

In 1947 f Ruth heeded the instruction of the Lord 
and was baptized into the Old Order German Baptist 
Brethren Church. In later life she became affiliat- 
ed with the Old Brethren Church. It seemed that the 
spiritual services gave her much satisfaction and 
comfort. 

In 1981, Viola and Ruth moved to Gettysburg, 
Ohio. Here on the morning of May 27, 1991, Ruth an- 
swered the call of her Lord, and her spirit ascended 
to the Lord who gave it — safe in the arms of Jesus. 

Mourning her departure are two brothers: Charles 
of Covington, Ohio; Joseph and wife Lydia, of Mod- 
esto, California; one sister, Viola Wolf of Gettys- 
burg, Ohio; two nieces: Edna Mae Thomas and hus- 
band, Robert; and Mary Ruth Strike and husband 
Lloyd; two nephews: David Wolf and wife, Jan; and 
Donald Wolf and wife, Gay; and many other relatives 
and friends. 

On Friday, May 31 , the family and a few friends 
gathered at the Stocker Funeral Home in Bradford for 
a short service by Brother Claude Boone, after which 
a funeral was held in the Oak Grove Old German 

Baptist meeting house. Services were conducted by 
Brother Henry Garber opening and Brother Hollis 
Flora taking the text from John 11:25,26. The body 
was laid to rest at the Oakland Cemetery. Graveside 
services were conducted by Brother Carl Bowman, 
followed by singing as the grave was being filled. 
We believe the Lord will provide sister Ruth's 



12 THE PILGRIM 

spirit with a new and perfect body on that great 
resurrection day. — The Family 



?? QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS ?? 

The first part of Hebrews 12 speaks of our need 
to receive and profit from the chastening of the 
Lord. The Lord said in Job 1:8 that Job was 
perfect and upright , and yet He allowed a great 
trial in his life. How can we discern the differ- 
ence between a trial to be patiently endured, and 
chastening from the Lord which should bring a 
change of course? — James Beery 

Ve invite answers to the questions in this space. 



MARRIAGE 

FLORA-MARTIN Elisabeth Martin and Greg Flora 
were married June 22 near Wakarusa, Indiana. 
New Address: 27320 CR. 42 

Nappanee, IN 46550 
(219) 862-2427 



ADDRESS CHANGE: Jesse Cover 

19293 Cherokee Rd. 
(209) 928-1491 

BIRTHS 

MARTIN — A son, Evan Bartholomew, born June 14 to 
Jonathan and Lisa Martin of Nappanee, Indiana. 

COVER — A son, Preston David, born July 6, to David 
and Rosemary Cover of Tuolumne, California. 



Ptstettai 



13 

THE EPHRATA SOCIETY 

The Church of the Brethren in America had the 
unfortunate experience of a division in its 
membership at an early date. Conrad Beissel was 
baptized in 1724 by Elder Peter Becker and was 
called to the ministry in the Conestoga church. 
Previous to this he had a remarkable experience. 
He had known the Brethren in Europe. There he was 
persecuted as a Pietist and fled to America, Here 
again he came under the influence of the Brethren, 
serving time as an apprentice to Peter Becker, who 
by trade was a weaver. For a while preceding his 
baptism by Peter Becker he had lived the life of a 
hermit. 

Beissel had not been very well indoctrinated, 
and some influences from his early experiences soon 
bore fruit in strange teachings. He began by 
advocating the seventh day as the Sabbath. Then he 
denounced the marriage state and strongly advocated 
the Mosaic law. This led to controversies with the 
Brethren. In 1728 he broke completely with the 
church and was rebaptized by one of his followers. 
This at once caused a division in the Conestoga 
Church; a part went with Beissel and a part remain- 
ed true to the church . Just at this time Alexander 
Mack came to America. He and others made strong 
efforts for a reconciliation with Beissel, but 
without avail. 

In 1732 Beissel left his church and went eight 
miles away on the banks of Cocalie Creek, where he 
once more became a hermit. Some of his friends, 
both men and women, resorted to him. A house was 
built for the sisters who took the vow of 
virginity. Ephrata was thus begun. Leaving his 
hermit retreat, Beissel now made proselyting trips 
through the Brethren congregations. Some of his 
teachings so much resembled those of the Brethren, 
and his manner of presentation was so attractive, 



14 THE PILGRIM 



that many were induced to follow him. Even some 
very influential men were drawn to Ephrata. Among 
these were several ministers of the church. The 
loss of these members was serious for the church at 
this time. Much of the colonial church history was 
affected by this society. To many people outside 
the church, the doctrines and practices of this 
society were taken as representing the things that 
the Tunker Brethren advocated. 

History and Doctrines of 
the Church of the Brethren 



Otho Winger 



BIBLE STUDY: THE GOLDEN RULE 

In this month's Bible Study we discussed the 
Golden Rule. We read Matthew 7 and other 
Scriptures. Leviticus 19:18 speaks of our 
relationship with the rest of the people of God. 
We are not to avenge or bear any grudge toward 
others but love our neighbors as ourselves. Exodus 
20:17, the tenth commandment, deals with 
covetousness which is strictly prohibited under the 
Old Law and also in our time. We read of the Good 
Samaritan in Luke 10:25-37* If we were in the 
beaten man's place, would we not appreciate someone 
helping us even if he were a heathen? We can 
practice the Golden Rule in everyday life. It 
would apply at a busy intersection where traffic is 
congested. Do we let others go first? The Golden 
Rule must rule our lives in every way — not just in 
deeds, but in thought and word as well. Is it hard 
to do? Yes, in the flesh it is, but God will give 
us strength for it. The Golden Rule should be 
practiced to our friends and also to our enemies. 
And there may be times when we will not see exactly 
which way is the Golden Rule. But always be 
motivated by love and the best will result. For 
further study read Eph. 4:32; Rom. 12:17, 13:9, 
15:2; and Col. 3:12-17. —Peter Cover 



THE PILGRIM 15 



FOR YOUTH 
Try Again 

Failure on the first try is not uncommon. This 
can apply to many areas of our lives — driving a car, 
making friends, overcoming temptation, forming a 
good habit. We sometimes almost need to fail, to 
see our weaknesses and keep from getting "the big 
head." God is willing and able to help us in all 
these areas, but we must understand that we need 
His help* 

When we need help in sewing a dress or repairing 
a bicycle, we ask for it. In the same way, God 
wants us to ask Him for His help in learning and 
overcoming. Learn to lean on God in every part of 
your life. As you lean on Him the failures will be 
less and the efforts will be successful. — L.C. 

' Tis a lesson you should heed — try again; 
If at first you don't succeed, try again; 
Let your courage then appear, 
For if you will persevere, 
You will conquer, never fear; 
Try again. 

Once or twice though you should fail, try again; 
If you would at last prevail, try again; 
If we strive, 'tis no disgrace 
Though we do not win the race. 
What should we do in that case? 
Try again. 

If you find your task is hard, try again; 
Time will bring you your reward, try again; 
All that other folk can do, 
Why, with patience, you can, too; 
Only keep this rule in view 
Try again. 

Author Unknown 



CHILDREN'S PAGE 
STAY ON TOP 

It doesn't matter if we are young or old, we all 
have troubles. Jesus tells us how to overcome them. 
When someone throws dirt at us , we are never to 
throw dirt back. Just brace yourself and keep on 
top as the horse did in the following story. 

A farmer returned from the field, and found old 
Nell, a faithful horse, had fallen into an unseen 
well. The well was deep, and the farmer couldn't 
think of an easy way to get her out. He knew if he 
did get her out, she wouldn't be any good. The 
farmer chose a hardhearted thing to do. He would 
fill the well, and bury old Nell. He got back far 
enough so he couldn't see her struggle, and began 
shoveling in the dirt. Old Nell wasn't ready to 
die. As the dirt fell on her, she braced her back 
the best she could. When the dirt settled around 
her, she kept stomping it under her feet. The farm- 
er worked hard, and the well was filling slowly. 
Old Nell kept on top of the dirt and rose higher and 
higher until she struggled out and slowly walked to- 
ward the pasture. 

The dirt the farmer was throwing was intended to 
take the life of old Nell. Also the dirt and sin 
this world throws at you is intended to take your 
spritual life. If you keep the dirt under your feet 
and stay on top of your troubles, you can only go 
one way, and that is up. Be like old Nell and keep 
climbing. Jesus wants all of you to climb until 
you have finished your journey on earth. Then He 
will call you to better pastures. 

— Everet Oyler 

Nappanee , Indiana 

NON-PROFIT ORG. -BULK RATE-U . S . POSTAGE PAID-PERMIT#1G 

Sonora, CA. 
THE PILGRIM 
19201 Cherokee Rd. 
Tuolumne, Calif. 95379 



THE PILGRIM 



VOL. 38 AUGUST— SEPTEMBER, 1991 NOS. 8 & 9 

'Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain 
from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul." /Peter2:it 



ATONEMENT 

The black was washed within the red 
And purest white became. 
He who was pure for me has died; 
Oh bless His holy name! 

My blackest sins within His blood. 
He freely washed away. 
And through this act my sinful heart 
Was white and clean that day. 

He suffered, bled, and died to cleanse 
The stain of my great sin; 
And if I yield to His blest will, 
He'll keep me pure within. 

His will it is that we should be 
Faultless and clean each day: 
A pure intent to do our best 
And all His word obey. 

— James Beery 

Nappanee , Indiana 



THE PILGRIM is a religious magazine published in the interests of the members of the 
Old Brethren Church. Subscription rate: $2.00 per year. Sample copies sent free on reqfuest. 
Publishing Editor: Leslie Cover 

Address: THE PILGRIM, 19201 Cherokee Rd., Tuolumne, CA 95379 



LIFELONG STUDY 

School time is nearly here again I Lunch boxes, 
pencils, school clothes, books, and bicycles are 
soon to be important parts of the lives of school 
children. Home schools begin again, too. Vacation 
is over. 

I trust there was no vacation from learning for 
any of us . Formal schooling has a beginning and an 
end, but learning must continue. If we' stop learn- 
ing, we stop growing, and Peter counsels us to 
"Grow in grace..." 

Parents are perpetual teachers. In school 
various subjects fill the school day. They are 
good subjects and needful to help prepare us to be 
useful Christians and good residents of a complex 
and technical society. However, the most important 
subjects must be taught at home. Truly each home 
is a "home school" without a summer vacation. 

These most important subjects taught at home (of 
course, supported and touched on at school as well) 
are the ones we need to continue in all our lives. 
The Word of God is our text book, and we can use 
SQ3R in our study of this vital book. This is an 
abreviation for a school study method that should 
work equally well for our lifetime home study. 

S stands for survey. Look over the subject. 
Page through the text book. Use a good concordance 
and find out where your specific subject is 
mentioned. Decide the chapters and verses most 
applicable. What Bible characters knew and use 
your subject best? 

Q stands for question. Ask questions about your 
chosen subject. Where will you use it? What does 
it mean? Will it apply in daily life? 

Next in the study method we have 3 R's. Read: 
Read the material well. Read it several times 
noticing the main and minor points and applications. 



THE PILGRIM 



Recite: In school this means to discuss in class 
what you have read and to answer questions about 
it. In our vital life studies it can mean practic- 
ing and trying out the principles you are studying. 
Review: Study over the material again in prepar- 
ation for the final test. And there will be a 
test — perhaps many of them — to determine how well 
and how much you have learned. The test may come 
as you meet a friend on the sidewalk. It may come 
as you become involved in a conflict. It may come 
when you are alone. But the test will come. 

We would like to focus attention on five of 
these subjects that are important ongoing studies 
in our Christian life. We will notice that these 
are subjects practiced to perfection in the life of 
Jesus, the master Teacher. 

1. Love. This is perhaps our most important 
subject because "God is love." It isn't a natural 

characteristic but must be learned. We pray in one 
of our hymns: "Teach us, Lord, at length to love." 
God will teach us to love if we are willing to 
learn. We need to love even our enemies, but also 
our brethren. Love makes peace and overlooks mis- 
takes- Col. 3:14 tells us to put on charity, which 
is the bond of perfectness. Love is a bond that 
will hold us together through rough times and 
trials. It is the only bond that will hold us to- 
gether and to the Lord. It comes from God — shed 
abroad in our hearts — and is worthy of our lifelong 
study. 

2. Respect. This subject needs much study 
because many in the world around us are losing it. 
We respect God first and learn to obey Him. We 
need to respect His laws and His people — fellow 
Christians. When we lose respect, it can be our 
fault or the fault of others, but it always means a 
break in the relationship. Respect is needful in 
business, in marriage, in families, in church 
communication. Study it to profit in it. 



THE PILGRIM 



3* Kindness. Kindness and respect are like 
spelling and reading: They go together. According 
to the poet, kindness is one of the "three gates" 
through which our speech should pass: "Is it 
needful?" "Is it true?" and the narrowest: "Is it 
kind?" This gives us a test we should study to 
pass each time we speak. Quite a study! Besides 
our words, our deeds and very manners should all be 
conditioned and taught by kindness. How pleasant 
it is to be with people who are kind to all! 

4- Patience. The school of affliction, 
adversity, and tribulation is the place to learn 
patience. As we study in this school, we sometimes 
wonder if we are gaining anything. We didn't 
enroll here by choice — it was a required course in 
the Christian's life. But patience is the diplo- 
ma. Happy are we if we learn it early and well. 

5* Holiness. This course is exclusively for 
God's children. Holiness is an attribute of God, 
and He wants to accomplish it in each of us. He 
says, "Be ye therefore holy for I am holy." That is 
reason enough to include it in our lifetime study. 
There is no adequate substitute for holiness. It 
means godliness, purity, righteousness. It is the 
result of serving and walking with God. 

In all fairness to the unconverted and to the 
children we must say that to be Christians is not 
just a matter of learning the attributes of the 
Christian life. We must first be born into God's 
family. God accomplishes this when we yield our 
lives to Him and are baptized into Jesus Christ. 
Those who learn God's ways are God's children. 

Our constant prayer should be Psalm 25:4-5: 
"Shew me thy ways, Lord; teach me thy paths. 
Lead me in thy truth, and teach me: for thou art 
the God of my salvation; on thee do I wait all the 
day." -L.C. 



THE PILGRIM 



WHY YOU NEED JESUS 

Some people think Jesus is nice but not absolute- 
ly necessary. They give Him their time only if 

more important things don't crowd Him out. Many 
people, even some who call themselves Christians, 
think of Jesus as mere frosting on the cake of life. 
They put Him on a level with collecting stamps, 
jogging, and reading the classics. (Phil. 2: 21 ) 

Is it true that you and I do not need Jesus more 
than that? If this is true, it's too bad He never 
found it out. What trouble He could have saved 
Himself. He would never have had to go homeless and 
sorrowing through life. Certainly He never would 
have suffered the shame and agonizing pain of cruci- 
fixtion just to add a little something nice to 
people's lives. 

But Jesus did pray %ri th strong crying and 
tears . " (Hebrews 5:7) He did endure shame and 
mocking at the hands of men. He did allow Roman 
soldiers to crucify him. But Jesus did not go 
through all this on His own account. He did this 
for others. Obviously, He saw that He was needed 
for a real emergency, which many people do not 
comprehend. 

What is this emergency? Well, if you heard that 
someone died for you, you would assume that you must 
have been in danger of death. Why else would any- 
one die for you? The Bible tells us, "We thus 
judge, that if one died for -all, then were all 
dead." (II Corinthians 5:14) In other words, if 
Jesus died for all of us, then we were all 
condemned to death. 

This death that faces us is more than ordinary 
death. Do you remember John 3:16, that verse that 
many people learned as a child? "For God so loved 
the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that 
whosoever believeth in him should not — " You 
supply the next word. 

"Perish." What a word I Right away we know this 
means something far more serious than ordinary dy- 



THE PILGRIM 



ing. John 3:16 goes on to say, "but have everlast- 
ing life." 

This is why you and I absolutely need Jesus . 
Yes, we need Him as a friend and as a guide. But 
far too many people see Him only as a friend. The 
truth is, we need Him as our Saviour to save us 
from perishing — from suffering everlasting punish- 
ment for our sins. 

How do we allow Him to save us? 

We have to admit that we deserve everlasting 
death. Some people find this hard to do; they do 
not feel that they are very bad. But simply imagine 
standing before God in all His glory. Look at 
yourself, and think of His holy eyes looking at 
you. Obviously, "All have sinned, and come short 
of the glory of God." (Romans 3:23) 

We must let Jesus be the master of the emergency. 
We do not prescribe how we want to be rescued; we 
leave that up to Him, as a songwriter said, "Here, 
Lord, I give myself away, 'tis all that I can do I" 

We have to accept an unglamorous rescue. No 
knight in shining armor saves us. Instead, a dying 
man, crippled by nails in his hands and feet, 
pleads, "Father forgive them; for they know not what 
they do." This is hardly the way we would expect to 
be rescued from our most dismaying fear. But the 
Bible calls Him "that man whom [God] hath ordained," 
(Acts 17:31) and insists that "neither is there 
salvation in any other: for there is none other 
name under heaven given among men, whereby we must 
be saved." (Acts 4:12) 

By this time, you see that to accept Jesus for 
what He is^ will change your life dramatically. 
Frightening? Perhaps. But how much more frighten- 
ing it is to think of refusing Jesus. He is the 
only one who can save you from eternal destruction. 
Jesus is your only absolute must. 

A poet unknown to this writer wrote: 

The hands of Christ seem very frail, 
For they were broken by a nail. 
But only they reach heaven at last 
Whom those frail, broken hands hold fast. 



THE PILGRIM 



We have to enter into a personal relationship 
with Jesus. No one demands more loyalty — or loves 
more loyally — than He does. 

We have to follow Him wherever He goes, even 
through death. As sure as we turn ourselves 
completely over to Jesus, something changes in us. 
A new power begins to live and to control our lives. 
Those old bad habits and passions lose their grip. 
The apostle Paul said, "I am crucified with Christ: 
nevertheless I live: yet not I, but Christ liveth 
in me." (Galations 2:20) 

I MET THE MASTER 

I had walked life's way with an easy tread, 
Had followed where comforts and pleasures led, 
Until one day in a quiet place 
I met the Master face to face. 

With station and rank and wealth for my goal, 
Much thought for my body but none for my soul, 
I had entered to win in life's mad race 
When I met the Master face to face. 

I met Him and knew Him and blushed to see 
That His eyes full of sorrow were fixed on me. 
And I faltered and fell at His feet that day 
While my castles melted and vanished away. 

Melted and vanished and in their place 
Naught else did I see but the Master's face. 
And I cried aloud, "Oh, make me meet 
To follow the steps of Thy wounded feet." 

My thought in now for the souls of men; 
I have lost life to find it again. 
E'er since one day in a quiet place, 
I met the Master face to face. 

— Anonymous 
Bv David L. Martin in a Rod & Staff tract 



THE PILGRIM 



Uncle Ernest's Meditations 

GOD IS 

Hebrews 11:6: "...For he that cometh to God 
must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder 
of them that diligently seek him." So we have the 
assurance that if we seek Him, we will find Him. 
We have the promise that whosoever will may take 
the water of life freely. Jesus is seeking us, so 
let us not try to hide as Adam amd Eve did in the 
Garden of Eden. 

OUR THINKING 

Philippians 4:8: "Finally, brethren, whatsoever 
things are true, whasoever things are honest, 
whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are 
pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever 
things are of good report; if there be any virtue, 
and if there be any praise, think on these 
things." So we see we need to carefully consider 
the traditions handed down to us and concentrate on 
the good. In the 35th chapter of Jeremiah we find 
where God praised the Rechabites for following the 
command of their father. 

SELF PRESERVATION 

Each of us was born into this world very 
helpless, and in need of constant care, till we 
were able to help provide the necessary things of 
life. Then when we felt the call to turn our lives 
over to the Lord and follow Him, we had to learn to 
deny our selfish desires and to desire spirit- 
ual gifts. I Corinthians 14:1: "Follow after 
charity, and desire spiritual gifts..." Then we 
have to give up selfish desires and love our 
neighbors as ourselves. 



THE PILGEIM 



GOD'S TIME 

In Luke 13:6-9, we find Jesus portrayed as the 
keeper of the vineyard, willing to give us another 
chance to bear fruit. II Peter 3:8: "But, beloved, 
be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is 
with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand 
years as one day." We are made to understand the 
Lord works with us as long as there is a willing 
heart to obey Him. 

— Ernest Wagner 

Modesto, California 



BAPTISM 

Again we, the members of the Eastern Congregation 
rejoiced that souls are still responding to the 
call of the Master. Maria Huffman received 
Christian baptism upon confession of her faith in 
Christ, July 18. May she be true to Jesus and 
enjoy the blessings of salvation forever. 

— Melvin Coning 

COMMUNION NOTICES 

We, the members of the Eastern District of the 
Old Brethren, have appointed a Lovefeast and 
Communion for September 21 & 22 at the Wakarusa 
meeting house. .The Lord willing, we are looking 
forward to a time of sweet fellowship and feeding 
upon His Word. A hearty invitation is extended to 
all. — Melvin Coning 

We, The members of the Old Brethren Church of 
California, have agreed to hold our Pall Lovefeast 
Meeting, the Lord willing, at Salida on October 19 
& 20. We sincerely invite and welcome all our dear 
brethren and sisters and friends to come and be 
with us at this time of communion and spiritual 
revival. May God richly bless this coming meeting 
and all who attend. — Joseph L. Cover 



10 THE PILGRIM 



?? QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS ?? 

The first part of Hebrews 12 speaks of our need 
to receive and profit from the chastening of the 
Lord. The Lord said in Job 1:8 that Job was 
perfect and upright, and yet He allowed a great 
trial in his life. How can we discern the differ- 
ence between a trial to be patiently endured, and 
chastening from the Lord which should bring a 
change of course? -James Beery 

Answer: 

I found this an interesting question. I 
grappled with this too, in the past. I found that 
I didn't always know the difference at the time but 
only afterwards, as I reflected upon it. As things 
painful came my way, which was it, trial or 
chastening? 

I believe a third aspect may also enter in — temp- 
tation. James 1:3 says God tempts no man with 
evil. A man is drawn away by temptation, unless he 
patiently endures. I've heard it said that few men 
endure temptation long enough for it to be turned 
into a trial of faith. For an example of one who 

did we can look at Joseph being tempted by 
Potiphar* s wife. (Gen. 39) He resisted and I would 
say that temptation certainly led to a true trial 
of faith. Satan tempted, but God who is in 
ultimate control, turned it around and used it for 
a trial of faith. Supposing Joseph had fallen? I 
believe God still would have turned it around and 
then used it as a chastisement on Joseph, and Joseph 
could have repented and been forgiven. Joseph 
endured and fled temptation. 

I don't believe all trials start with temptation. 
The fiery trials Peter mentions could take many 
forms. It may be forbearing with my brother's weak- 
ness or short coming. (After all, I have some 
too.) It may be enduring hearing profanity in a 
public work place daily and enduring, preserving a 



THE PILGRIM 11 



pure inner life and walk with God. I don't believe 
trials are "brought on by sin or disobedience, 
whereas chastisement, rebuke, correction, and some 
afflictions are. I've found it that way. Say, for 
example, I 've wasted money and I suffer along with 
my family. That humbles me and turns me around to 
repent ence. I realize God loves me so much He 
takes time to correct. Isn't it the same with us 
parents and our children? "Before I was afflicted 
I went astray." (Ps. 119:67) He must not have 
strayed afterwards. 

Was Job chastened or tried? I believe a trial 
is sent to test and gauge us like in a classroom 
setting. I believe it also teaches obedience. 
"Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by 
the things which he suffered." (Hebv5:8 j -about 
Christ) How much more us, if He "needed" to learn 
obedience? I believe it was for our example to do 
likewise . Of course , chastisement can teach 
obedience along with its other benefits. 

As an aside, in referring to Job, I'm always 
impressed by chapter 42:7-10. The Lord was only 
going to accept Job's three friends after they 
sacrificed and Job prayed for them. He must have 
accepted them, for vs.- 9 says. "He also accepted 
Job." 

Now, in vs. 10 it states, "And the Lord turned 
the captivity of Job when he prayed for his three 
friends." First, they were still called friends, 
regardless of how they had treated Job, and he was 
able to pray for them, true friends or not. 
Second, only after he prayed was his captivity, or 
trial, lifted. How is it with us? Is some 
captivity, trial, or chastisement gripping us 
because we ha not prayed for our friends, even 
some who wronged us? Our substance may not be 
doubled, but our inner life and spiritual substance 
may be more than doubled, if we prove faithful in 
fiery trials and pray for others. 

I believe an inspired minister could build a 
message on Job 42:10. — Norman Sauder 

Mount Jov ; PA 



Pbtrtrrical 



For the next few issues we hope to print at 
least some of the forty "Basic or Ground searching 
Questions" proposed to Alexander Mack and his 
brethren by Eberhard Louis Gruber, a separatist who 
later became leader of the Inspirationists. 



(Gruber) 

In God Beloved Friends and Fellow Pilgrims: 

There have been several persons who have desired 
a somewhat more definite explanation and report 
about your new baptism and church fellowship, 
especially since that which has been said or even 
written about it from time to time has still left 
them in great uncertainty. In order to learn about 
your opinion more thoroughly and accurately and 
thereby dispel any further doubt in regard to it, 
these candid and herewith-presented questions are 
submitted to you. We expect your clear and frank 
answers upon these soon. 

(Mack) 

Dear Friends: 

You have requested from us in love our motives. 
The Apostle Peter teaches believers (I Peter 3:15) 
that they must always be ready to give an answer to 
anyone who calls them to account for the hope that 
is in them. For these reasons, we have not been 
able to evade this, but rather have very briefly 
answered these submitted questions in a simple 
fashion with frankness in love and in the certainty 
of faith. We wish to leave them to your 
examination before God. 

Question 1: Do you maintain that for over one 
thousand years there has been no true and genuine 
baptism, and, consequently, no true church on earth? 



THE PILGRIM 13 



Answer: We maintain and believe that at all 
times God has had His church which observed the true 
baptism and ordinances. This was, however, always 
hidden from the unbelievers and often consisted of 
but few members. Despite this, the gates of hell 
could never prevail against the church of the Lord 
Jesus. It can also be proved from the histories 
that God has caused His ordinances to be revealed 
as a witness to the unbelievers at all times. 

(to be continued) 
— European Origins of the Brethren 

by Donald Durnbaugh 



FOR YOUTH 
FAITHFUL UNDER COVER 

When to the front you cannot go 

Be faithful under cover; 
God needs a secret service, too, 

The one to help the other. 
It may be in the engine-room, 

Just firing the old boiler 

Where it's dark and lonely, lad; 

Be faithful under cover. 

First, find the place of secret prayer; 
Be faithful under cover; 

Fast close the door and linger there- 
It is the place of power. 

If in the home and kitchen, lass, 
Your calling you discover, 

In woman's hand is destiny; 
Be faithful under cover. 

Elijah, in the wilderness, 

Was faithful under cover; 
God's hidden man was sent to warn 

Of dearth, the country over. 



14 THE PILGRIM 



Then, if like him to Cherith sent 

To wait the coming shower, 
He'll keep and feed and cherish you 

Be faithful under cover. 

Perchance, you've been at battle's front; 

Now, faithful under cover; 
Your health is gone, you cannot work, 

You feel your day is over. 
Look up I Cheer up! You're not through yet, 

God is your gracious Lover; 
'Tis in the heart man serves Him best, 
Be faithful under cover. 

— Mrs. E. ¥. Grossman 

Elijah lived during a time of gross idolatry in 
Israel. In I Kings 19:18, God told Elijah, "Yet I 
have left me seven thousand in Israel, all the knees 
which have not bowed unto Baal, and every mouth 
which hath not kissed him." Seven thousand were 
faithful under cover! 

The little maid that waited on Naaman's wife was 
faithful to God. She told her that Naaman could be 
healed if he went to Elijah in Samaria. She was 
faithful away from home. 

What about us? Our times are critical too. Are 
we faithful in the background? If we're doing our 
best work, though it may be small, it will be 
rewarded. It is the attitude of the heart that 
counts. 

We should not try to hide our faith, but if our 
place in God ' s Kingdom is small , we should be 
faithful there too. 

— Sarah Cover 



ADDRESS CORRECTION: Greg Flora 

27320 C.R. 42 
Wakarusa, IN 46573 



THE PILGRIM 15 



BIBLE STUDY 

For this month's Bible Study, we decided to 
start reading the book of the Acts, chapter by 
chapter. Th£ booK of Acts tells of the earliest 
church history that there is. It is the account of 
the Apostle Paul's journeys for the most part but 
not totally. 

We read Acts 1 and had many good discussions on 
some of the verses we read. Who wrote the Acts? 
The author is not named as in many of the books of 
the Bible, but we can get a pretty good idea that 
it was Luke. The treatise that the author had made 
earlier is directed to Theophilus. The Gospel of 
Luke starts by addressing the same person- 
Theophilus. (Luke 1:3) 

Someone asked the question, "Who was this 
Theophilus?" Some commentators think that he was a 
well known man that could distribute Luke's 
writings easily, possibly a printer or scribe. 

What does "infallible" in verse three mean? 
Unmistakable.* Correct without a doubt. 

We had a good discussion on the choosing of 
Matthias for the twelfth apostle. Since Judas had 
betrayed his Lord, there was a place left empty. 
Both of the disciples suggested had been with 
Christ during His whole ministry. 

Verse six has an interesting question in it. 
The apostles still didn't understand completely why 
Christ came. They still wanted Christ to restore 
the kingdom of Israel back to what it was like in 
David's time. But with the next two verses He 
explains to them that they are no longer an earthly 
kingdom, but with the Holy Ghost guiding them, they 
were to witness in every nation. 

A good point was made from verse 14 • The early 
church prayed together "with one accord." This is 
a goal that the church should strive for now also. 
There is power in prayer as we see in studying 
those days of the early church. — Peter Cover 



CHILDREN'S PAGE 
LIGHT AND DARKNESS 

When God created the heaven and earth , every- 
thing was very dark. God knew there had to be 
light for things to grow, so He created light. Now 
there was day and night. 

Many years after God created man, the earth 
again was dark with sin. God caused a great flood 
to get rid of the darkness. Man was created so he 
would be a glory to God. We need both kinds of 
light to live: light to separate the night from 
day, and spiritual light to separate us from sin, 
which is spiritual darkness. God knew man would 
again fall into this darkness, if He didn't send 
them the "True Light." For this reason Jesus was 
born. As the world gets darker in sin, the light 
of God's children should shine brighter and 
brighter. "The darker the night the brighter the 
light." Jesus tells us the last days will get 
darker and darker. Every child that is born into 
this world, is a true light for Jesus. Many times 
children have a brighter light than we adults. Sad 
to say, some children grow up, turn away from God, 
and their light is darkened. A comparison could be 
made to flashlights. Every new flashlight we buy 
has a bright light. As time rolls on and they are 
neglected, something happens. The batteries are 
dead. Have you ever tried to use a flashlight when 
the batteries are dead? It is quite a disappoint- 
ment , isn * t it? This is the way Jesus feels when 
we fail to shine for Him. We are all like flash- 
lights; we need to be recharged with the TRUE LIGHT 
OF GOD. 

— Everett Oyler 

NON-PROFIT ORG. -BULK RATE-U.S. POSTAGE PAID-PERMIT#10 

Sonora, CA. 
THE PILGRIM 
19201 Cherokee Rd. 
Tuolumne, Calif 95379 



THE PILGRIM 



VOL.38 OCTOBER— NOVEMBER, 1991 NOS. 10. A 11 

"Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain 
from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul." i Peter 2:11 



THAM THEE, LORD, FOR THIS FAIR EARTH 

We thank Thee, Lord, for this fair earth, 
The glittering sky, the silver sea; 
For all their beauty, all their worth, 
Their light and glory, come from Thee. 

Thine are the flowers that clothe the ground, 
The trees that wave their arms above, 
The hil^£ that gird our dwellings round, 
As Thou f dost gird Thine own with love. 

Yet teach us still how far more fair, 
More glorious, Father, in Thy sight, 
Is one pure deed, one holy prayer, 
One heart that owns Thy Spirit's might. 

So while we gaze with thoughtful eye 
On all the gifts Thy love has given, 
Help us in Thee to live and die, 
By Thee to rise from earth to heaven. 

— G. E. L. Cotton, 1856 



THE PILGRIM is a religious magazine published in the interests of the members of the 
Old Brethren Church. Subscription rate: $2.00 per year. Sample copies sent free on request. 
Publishing Editor: Leslie Cover 

Address: THE PILGRIM, 19201 Cherokee Rd,, Tuolumne, CA 95379 



"DID YOU SAY THANK YOU?" 

The church service had ended and the worshippers 
moved about greeting one another and enjoying that 
time of fellowship that comes when men have a common 
bond in the Lord. Over on one side of the crowd, 
elderly Brother Frank was surrounded by the small 
fry of the congregation. They looked up expectant- 
ly, waiting for the hand— out sure to follow. A 
large, wrinkled hand withdrew from his pocket, and 
as he shook hands with each small child, he left a 
piece of paper— wrapped peppermint which the 
children took with delight. The youngest one, new 
to the weekly ritual, ran with shining face to show 
Mother. "Did you say thank you?" Back she hurried 
to deliver her childish appreciation. The elderly 
brother beamed with pleasure, and continued his 
rounds . 

"Thank you" is a courtesy we are taught from 
childhood as we receive favors from one another. We 
somehow realize that to fail to show appreciation 
is a sign of carelessness. We want to show thank- 
fulness as a way of keeping up with our debts. A 
"Thank you" doesn't pay for the favor, but to omit 
it only increases the obligation. In many cases, 
to show thankfulness is the only payment one can 
give. 

Are we so careful in our responses to God? The 
gifts keep coming; the "blessings never fail. As 
some express it, "We owe Him all that we have and 
are." 

The poet Christopher Wordsworth wrote: 

Lord of heaven and earth and sea, . 

To Thee all praise and glory be; 

How shall we show our love :j to Thee, 

Who givest all./. Who givest all? 
Make a list of your blessings. One sister ob- 
jected to the song "Count Your Blessings" ^cause,, \ 



THE PILGRIM 



she said, "We can't count them all." But God is 
the Giver of every item on the list and we keep 
adding to it. James 1:17: "Every good gift and 
every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down 
from the Father of lights, with whom is no variable- 
ness, neither shadow of turning." 

Our nation still acknowledges God as our Provider 
when the President each year proclaims a national 
day of Thanksgiving. Just how deep this goes with 
each citizen must vary greatly. But how glad we 
can be for a government that still recognizes the 
God of Heaven! "Righteousness exalteth a nation: 
but sin is a reproach to any people." (Proverbs 
14:34) The sin of ingratitude is as wrong as any. 

We can be thankful for our changing scenes. One 
of my greatest earthly joys was to have our children 
all at home, doing things together as a family. As 
changes come, this blessing must give way to other 
satisfactions as we see new homes established. If 
we resist such changes, we must remember that many 
have not even had the privilege of a family and 
have still been thankful. One great satisfaction 
is knowing that God is aware of our needs, our 
capacities, and our highest usefulness. If we are 
in His family, what more can we ask? 

Another inevitable change is that of becoming 
less strong and able — perhaps even seeing sickness 
or disease grip us and destroy our bodily comfort. 
To help us be thankful even in this change we can 
do several things. First, we can look around us 
and see many who are in worse shape than we are. 
Second, we can see the faithful testimony of our de- 
vout Christian friends in these conditions. For 
some, sickness and weakness only seem to refine 
their devotion and make their praise more abundant. 
Study the hymns and learn that many came from hearts 
of sorrow, disappointments, and even the prospect 
of martyrdom. Third, we can rely on God to carry 
us through — even through the valley of the shadow 
of death. We can concentrate on His promises. One 



THE PILGRIM 



of the clearest messages of the Word of God is that 
the best is yet to come for His children. 

So we might add to that list of blessings the 
promise that Jesus will never leave us nor forsake 
us. We will never be alone — not even if we feel 
lonely. 

The more we meditate , the longer the list be- 
comes. If we find a few things on the list that we 
took without saying thank you, let us run back and 
thank Him without delay. 

God is with us, Oh what comfort 
What a joy those words afford! 
He will always walk beside us; 
Hear the promise of His Word. 

Can we sorrow as we ponder 
Changes creeping in unasked? 
We should bow in thankful wonder 
Soon the changes will be past. 

Make a list and count your blessings. 
Though we cannot name them all 
As our debts we are confessing 
We will learn on Him to call. 

Praise our God and thank Him freely; 
Every good we owe His grace. 
Serve and pray and bless Him truly 
Soon we too will see His face. — L.C. 



THE ULTIMATE CALAMITY 
* 
What would you say was the greatest threat to 
the human race today? Crime? Drugs? Immorality? 
AIDS? Famine? Communism? War? A nuclear holo- 
caust? Environmental pollution? While all of 
these may be valid concerns, they are mostly 
external influences over which the individual has 
very little, if any, control. The Bible warns of 



THE PILGRIM 



a more insidious danger which, tragically, is 
little recognized by mankind in general hut will 
ultimately result in greater calamity than all the 
above hazards. 

And this danger is not from without but from 
within the individual. In Jer. 17:9 it is described 
thus: "The heart is deceitful above all things, and 
desperately wicked: who can know it?" Not just 
deceitful but deceitful above all things I And not 
only wicked but desperately wicked! Jesus said 
that nothing external can defile a man, but the 
things that come out of him defile him. (Mark 
7:15) He goes on to say that out of the heart 
proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, 
murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, 
lasciviousness, an evil eye, pride, and foolish- 
ness. (Mark 7:22) 

The apostle James writes in a similar vein about 
the tongue in chapter three. He says the tongue 
offends, boasts, is a fire, a world of iniquity, it 
defiles the whole body, sets on fire the course of 
nature, and is set on fire of hell! No man can 
tame it; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly 
poison, and curses man which is made after the 
similitude of God. Verse 14 indicates that the 
evil words of the tongue are the result of envy and 
strife in the heart, and Jesus said, "out of the 
abundance of the heart the mouth (or tongue) 
speaketh." (Mat. 12:34) 

Genesis 8:21 tells us that the heart of man is 
predisposed to evil. The Apostle James says (l:22 
& 26) that man deceives his own heart. A heart 
motivated by anger, ill will, pride, envy, 
jealousy, malice, selfishness, etc. is deceived. 
Titus 3:3 says we were at some time deceived, so we 
have either a deceived or a renewed heart. If we 
are living in foolishness, disobedience, lusts and 
pleasures, malice and envy f or hatred we are 
deceived. 

The diversity of understanding about basic Bible 
doctrines such as love, salvation, baptism, brother- 



6 THE PILGRIM 



hood, head covering, foot washing, separation, 
marriage, non-resistance, etc. would indicate that 
many professing Christians must be deceived. Yet 
who would admit this? 

When His disciples asked Jesus about end time 
events, His first words of reply were, "Take heed 
that no man deceive you." (Mat. 24:4) And in verse 
24 He says, "...If it were possible they shall 
deceive the very elect." Who are "they"? False 
Christs and false prophets, Satan's agents 
masquerading as ministers of righteousness. The 
Apostle Paul says, ". . .Satan himself is transformed 
into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great 
thing if his ministers also be transformed as the 
ministers of righteousness..." (II Cor. 11:14-15) 

The same Apostle warns in Acts 20: 29-30, "For I 
know this, that after my departing shall grievous 
wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. 
Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking 
perverse things, to draw away disciples after 
them." The Apostle Peter likewise warns that 
"there shall be false teachers among you, who 
privily shall bring in damnable heresies..." 
(II Peter 2:1) And Jesus himself said, "Beware of 
false prophets which come to you in sheep's cloth- 
ing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves." 

Is it possible that some with whom we break the 
bread of communion, that most sacred and intimate 
of all Christian relationships, might be false 
teachers, false prophets, subversive wolves who 
scatter the sheep? How can this be? There could 
be different ways of expressing an answer to this, 
but I believe a basic reason is found in II Thes. 
2:10-11, where we are told that some will perish 
"because they received not the love of the truth, 
that they might be saved. And for this cause God 
shall send them strong delusion, that they should 
believe a lie..." It has been said that if we do 
not believe the truth we will believe a lie. 

Let us look at a few examples of deceit. The 



THE PILGRIM 7 



religious leaders of Jesus 1 day referred to their 
Messiah, the Lord of Glory, as "that deceiver." 
This blasphemous accusation is surely an outstanding 
example of the delusive nature of deceit. In John 
16:2 Jesus said, "...Yea, the time cometh that who- 
soever killeth you will think that he doeth God 
service." Was Saul of Tarsus deceived? See Rom. 
7:11. Those who prophesied in the Lord 's name and 
in His name did many wonderful works? (Mat. 7:22) 
The church at Sardis was told, "...Thou hast a name 
that thou livest and art dead. "The Laodicean 
Church said, "I am rich, and increased with goods, 
and have need of nothing;" and did not know that 
they were "wretched, and miserable, and poor, and 
blind, and naked." These were churchesl And how 
about those individuals we hear about from time to 
time who seem to think they alone understand God's 
will and separate themselves? The Apostle John 
says those who walk in the light do have fellowship 
with others. (I John 1:7) 

The epistle to Timothy says "that in the last 
days perilous times shall come," and "evil men and 
seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and 
being deceived." (II Tim. 3:1 & 13) Do you see any 
evidence of this today? I am appalled at the news 
accounts of some of the major denominations 1 ef- 
forts to accept all kinds of immorality and even to 
elevate these wicked people to positions of leader- 
ship in the church instead of insisting on the 
scriptural standard of repentance and conversion. 
The goal seems to be to interpret God's Word to 
accomodate contemporary culture rather than to 
abandon carnal, self — indulgent behavior and accept 
God's way. Surely this is gross deception in our 
time. 

The Apostle John says, "But he that hateth (does 
not love) his brother is in darkness , and walketh 
in darkness, and knoweth not whither he go eth, 
because that darkness hath blinded his eyes." Have 
you seen any examples of this? 

For another example of how pride and selfishness 



8 THE PILGRIM 



deceive, consider the account of King Ahab's 
attempt to take Ramoth — Gilead from the Syrians. 
(I Kings 22 and II Chron. 18) Jehoshaphat, king of 
Judah, had agreed to assist Ahab in this venture 
but urged that the word of the Lord be consulted 
first. Pour hundred false prophets told Ahab what 
he wanted to hear, but Jehoshahat was not satisfied 
and asked if there were not a prophet of the Lord 
available whom they might inquire of. Ahab 
replied, "There is yet one man, Micaiah, but I hate 
him, for he doth not prophecy good concerning me, 
but evil." Why was this? The evil was not in 
Micaiah, but in Ahab, who had sold himself "to work 
wickedness." (I Kings 21:25) However Micaiah was 
sent for and at first replied frivolously to Ahab's 
question. Ahab understood this and adjured the 
prophet to tell nothing but the truth. Yet when 
Micaiah did so, Ahab refused to heed and as a 
result, lost his life- Apparently Ahab was able to 
recognise truth, but his love of personal ambition 
was greater than his love for the God of truth. 

Ahab was a king of Israel who might have had his 
name included in the honor roll of the saints, but 
instead the record says he "did evil in the sight 
of the Lord above all that were before him." 

And I think of Balaam, a prophet who had direct 
communication with God. But he had a serious 
problem: a deceived heart. The Apostle Peter says 
he "loved the wages of unrighteousness." 

God's arch enemy Satan is the master of deceit 
and, according to Rev. 12:9, "deceiveth the whole 
world." How important then that we be "not of the 
world." 

The Apostle John in his apocalyptic vision saw 
those who were not found written in this book of 
life and the devil that deceived them cast into the 
lake of fire. (Rev. 20 ) Surely this would be the 
ultimate calamity! But there is also a ray of hope 
here. We can have our names in the book of life. 

I believe it is fair to say that all the world's 
social ills are the result of deceived hearts. No 



THE PILGRIM 



wonder a wise man said, "Keep thy heart with all 
diligence; for out of it are the issues of life." 
(Prov. 4:23) 

Much more could be referred to , but I believe 
enough has been presented to warn us of a grave 
danger that is rampant all about us and the apostle 
says will even be found among us. It is so common- 
place we are often unaware of its presence and 
indifferent to its consequences. Does this alarm 
us or concern us enough to move us to action? 

Now since we have within us this heart that is 
predisposed to evil, is deceitful above all things 
and desperately wicked, and is responsible for all 
of the world 1 s social ills, what shall we do? Is 
there an antidote, a remedy, an escape from the 
lake of fire? We know there is, and we want to 
praise God that man's salvation is heaven's great 
concern. 

According to the words of Jesus there can be 
"pure hearts," (Mat. 5:8) "honest and good hearts." 
(Luke 8:15) The book of Psalms refers to "clean 
hearts." The Apostle Paul mentions some "that call 
on the Lord out of a pure heart." (II Tim. 2:22) 
The Apostle Peter says, "Ye have purified your 
souls (or hearts) in obeying the truth through the 
Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren..." 
(I Peter 1:22) This tells us something about how 
we can have a pure, honest, good, and clean heart, 
a heart that is not deceived. 

In Hebrews 4:12 we are told that the Word of God 
is quick (alive) and powerful and is a discerner of 
the thoughts and intents of the heart. Here then 
is means by which we can determine whether the 
heart is deceived. Of course, more than a casual 
recognition of the Word is necessary before it can 
have this discerning power. 

I believe the solution to the problem of the 
deceived heart is quite simple and yet so difficult 
that few will find it. It is difficult because the 
carnal man will not recognize or submit to the 
authority of his Creator. He will not have anyone 



10 THE PILGRIM 



reign over him. 

Now for the simple solution. It is stated first 
in Deu. 6:5 and restated by the Lord Jesus in Mat. 
22:37, Mark 12:30, and Luke 10:27: "Thou shalt 
love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with 
all thy soul, and with all thy might." 

The person who does this will be able to recog- 
nize truth and error, will not be deceived with the 
world, and his name will be found in the book of 
life in that great day when the deceitful allure- 
ments of this evil world will have lost all their 
attraction. 

If Ahab, Balaam, Cain, absalom, Judas, the 
Scribes and Pharisees, and all the other failures 
of history had observed this divine instruction, 
their names would shine among the heros of faith. 

My heart's desire and prayer to God for my 
brethren and friends is that not one would be 
deceived. Let us hear the words of the Master ring 
across the centuries, "Take heed that ye be not 
deceived. " 

— Harold Royer 
Goshen, Indiana 



Uncle Ernest's Meditations 

OUR THOUGHTS AND SPEECH 

Psalm 139:4: "For there is not a word in my 
tongue, but, lo, Lord, thou knowest it alto- 
gether." It is beyond our understanding how our 
thoughts and tongues wori igether to form words, 
but the Lord knows the intentions that cause it. 
Writing is dependent upon the same process. So a 
large part of our lives depends on this. Mat 12:37: 
"For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by 
thy words thou shalt be condemned." 



THE PILGRIM 11 



THE SPIRIT WE NEED 

Luke 9:54-58: "And when his disciples James and 
John saw this, they said, Lord, wilt thou that we 
command fire to come down from heaven and consume 
them, even as Elias did? But he turned, and 
rebuked them, and said, ye know not what manner of 
Spirit ye are of, For the Son of man is not come to 
destroy men's lives, but to save them. " So we see 
how easy it is to follow the evil spirit and seek 
revenge. The carnal nature is a constant temptation 
to us. 



GROWING IN LOVE 

Romans 5:3: "And not only so, but we glory in 
tribulations also: knowing that tribulations 
worketh patience; And patience, experience; and ex- 
perience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; be- 
cause the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts 
by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us." So we 
see how the Lord patiently works with us to prepare 
us for His kingdom. 

REASONABLE 

When God created man He gave him enough reasoning 
power to govern the earth. But when man disobeyed 
and sought to live for himself, he used that power 
to try to exalt himself, and think he could make 
better laws than God gave him. Isaiah 1:18: "Come 
now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: 
though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as 
white as snow; though they be red as crimson, they 
shall be as wool. If ye be willing and obedient, 
ye shall eat the good of the land. " So we need to 
change our reasoning to conform to God's will. 

Ernest Wagner 
Modesto , California 



12 THE PILGRIM 



Bible Study— Acts 2 

This month for our lesson in Bible Study we 
studied the second chapter of Acts. This is the 
chapter dealing with the day of Pentecost and the 
wonderful outpouring of the Holy Spirit into the 
lives of individual believers. Acts 2 is really a 
chapter about the beginning of the Church. 

What does "Pentecost" mean? As the name sug- 
gests, it comes from a root word meaning "fifty". 
Pentecost was celebrated fifty days after the 
passover (crucifixion) and ten days after Christ's 
ascension. It was the Jewish harvest feast or the 
feast of first fruits. 

It was on the day of Pentecost that the Holy 
Spirit was poured out upon the 120 believers that 
were gathered together. This was a direct fulfill- 
ment of Jesus' own words in Acts 1:8. The outpour- 
ing of the Spirit was also a fulfillment of Joel 
2:20-32, which is quoted in the chapter. Concerning 
the prophecy in Joel, there was also speculation 
that the references to the sun being darkened may 
have referred to the crucifixion of Jesus. 

What was the significance of the tongues of fire 
that sat on each of the 120 believers present? 
There were two reasons discussed. First, the 

cloven tongues of fire were a visible sign of the 
Holy Spirit's presence. Secondly, it was a fulfill- 
ment of John the Baptist's words in Matthew 3:11 
when he referred to the baptism with fire. 

Possibly one of the greatest miracles of 
Pentecost was the ability of the 120 believers to 
speak in different languages, or tongues- Jews 
from fifteen nations are listed as present, and 
there may have been more. People from each nation 
heard the Gospel preached in their native tongues. 
It is truly amazing to think of new converts from 
every nation carrying the Gospel of Christ back to 
their own land. 

The gift of speaking in tongues was given to 
facilitate the spread of the Gospel and as a sign 



THE PILGRIM 13 

to the unbeliever. (I Corl 14:22) It is helpful to 
remember three things when approaching the subject 
of speaking in tongues. First, speaking in tongues 
is not a requirement. Nowhere in Scripture are 
tongues mentioned as a requirement for salvation. 
Secondly, since speaking in tongues is a gift, it 
cannot be demanded but must be given us by God. 

And finally, speaking in tongues was not among the 
requirements for new believers. (Acts 2:38) 

Three thousand souls were added to the Church on 
the day of Pentecost. Each of them received the 
gift of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is still 
working and moving in the hearts of believers today. 

— Edward Wagner 

Modesto , California 



SUMMER SUNS ARE GLOWING 

Summer suns are glowing over land and sea; 
Happy light is flowing bountiful and free; 
Everything rejoices in the mellow rays; 
All earth's thousand voices swell the psalm of 

praise. 

God's free mercy streameth over all the world, 
And His banner gleameth everywhere unfurled; 
Broad and deep and glorious as the heav'n above, 
Shines in might victorious His eternal love. 

Lord, upon our blindness Thy pure radiance pour; 
For Thy lovingkindness make us love Thee more. 
And when clouds are drifting dark across our sky, 
Then, the veil uplifting, Father, be Thou nigh. 

We will never doubt Thee, tho' Thou veil Thy light; 
Life is dark without Thee; death with Thee is 

bright. 
Light of light! Shine o'er us on our pilgrim way; 
Go, Thou still before us to the endless day. 

— Wa ] 1 i am Walsham How 



CHILDREN'S PAGE 
ARE WE FORGIVING? 

A king is a man chosen to rule over a certain 
group of people. The men he is ruler over are 
called servants. As time goes on, the servants owe 
the king money, and the servants owe each other. 
Once a king wanted to be paid what the servants 
owed him. The first servant owed him a large sum 
of money, but he couldn't pay. The king ordered 
this man, his wife, and children to be sold to pay 
the debt. The servant begged the king to be 
patient, and he would pay all he owed. How awful 
he must have felt to realize his family would be 
sold and possibly never see each other again! The 
king took pity on him and cancelled the debt and 
said, "You owe me nothing." How thankful he must 
have felt! But something sad happened. This same 
servant found a fellow servant that owed him a 
small amount of money. He demanded payment, but 
the second servant could not pay. He had no pity 
on him but cast him into prison till he could pay. 
When the king heard what the first servant had done 
he said, "Shouldn't you also have had compassion on 
your fellow servant, as I had for you?" 

Jesus said if we cannot forgive others, He will 
no t f o rgi ve us . In ange r the king ca s t the f i rs t 
servant in prison till he could pay everything he 
owed. How sad! He once had his debt all forgiven, 
but because of his unwillingness to forgive others, 
he had to pay. 

Jesus died on the cross for all of us. He paid 
what we couldn't. Let's all be kind and forgiving 
towards each other. — Everett Oyler 

mm=mm% ohg.-bulk kate-u^. postage paid-permit#iq 

Sonora, CA. 
THE PILGRIM 
19201 Cherokee Rd. 
Tuolumne, Calif. 95379 



THE PILGRIM 



VOL. 38 December, 1991 No, 12 

"Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain 
from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul." / Peter 2:it 



Once in royal David's city- 
Stood a lowly cattle shed, 

Where a mother laid her baby 
In a manger for His bed: 

Mary was that mother mild, 

Jesus Christ her little Child. 

He came down to earth from heaven, 
Who is God and Lord of all, 

And His shelter was a stable, 
And His cradle was a stall: 

With the poor, and mean, and lowly, 

Lived on earth our Saviour holy. 

And our eyes at last shall see Him, 
Through His own redeeming love; 

For that Child so dear and gentle 
Is our Lord in heaven above: 

And He leads His children on 

To the place where He is gone. 

Not in that poor lowly stable, 
With the oxen standing by, 

We shall see Him, but in heaven, 
Set at God's right hand on high: 

When like stars His children crowned, 

All in white shall wait around. 

~ -C.F. Alexander, 1848 



THE PILGRIM is a religious magazine published in the interests of the members of the 
Old Brethren Church. Subscription rate: $200 per year. Sample copies sent free on request. 
Publishing Editor: Leslie Cover; 

Address: THE PILGRIM, 19201 Cherokee Rd., Tuolumne, CA 95379 



THE COMING OP JESUS 

The world is changing, but human needs remains 
the same. Fifty years ago when I was a boy, the 
birth of Jesus Christ was observed each year at the 
customary time. (We know this date is uncertain 
and likely inaccurate.) Not a lot was done — a few 
gifts were given, and families assembled. The 
schools put on programs, and I believe Christians 
remembered Jesus' advent with joy and thanksgiving. 
The merchants tried to sell all they could, and the 
towns were decorated some. On the street corners 
the Salvation Army volunteers rang bells to collect 
funds for the needy. The depression was barely 
past and World War II was just around the 
corner — in fact, had begun fifty years ago. 

From then till now, conditions have steadily 
changed. This country — with only a few setbacks — 
has become more and more prosperous. Technology 
has presented the free world with luxuries and 
conveniences unheard of before. Television has 
been perfected bringing entertainment and world 
wide news into the living rooms. Travel has 
increased widely. With prosperity and inflation, 
many have made fabulous fortunes. And the 
celebration of Jesus' birth has also changed. For 
many businesses, this time of year means the year's 
profit. Decorations are lavish. Gifts in general 
are extravagant, unneeded, but perfectly wrapped. 
Celebrations are more and greater, but Jesus is 
honored less. 

This change has brought a justified reaction in 
the church of Jesus Christ. No sincere Christian 
wishes to encourage the idolatry and foolishness of 
this season. For some, it has meant complete 
rejection of any involvement or celebration of any 
kind. Others have felt that an observance of this 
momentous event of the coming of the Saviour is 



THE PILGRIM 



only right and good if it is done consistently and 
reverently. It is not in my heart to condemn but 
only to encourage a true worship of God and commit- 
ment to His truth. Our prayer is that there be no 
division, even over this issue, and that we be 
careful and kind that we give no offense. Paul 
says (Romans 14: 5,6), "One man esteemeth one day 
above another: another esteemeth every day alike. 
Let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind. 
He that regardeth the day, regardeth it unto the 
Lord; and he that regardeth not the day, to the 
Lord he doth not regard it..." I believe this 
passage was directed primarily to the observance of 
Sabbaths and to eating of certain foods, but the 
principles of love and respect, and truly great 
issues versus less important things are seen in 
Paul's words. Read the whole of Romans 14 to see 
the Holy Spirit dispensing unity and kind consider- 
ation in the body of Christ. 

To present some positive thoughts for this time 
I would point to the various reactions of the 
people mentioned in the Word, who welcomed Jesus at 
His birth. 

The shepherds who heard the angels announce the 
wonderful event were afraid when they saw the glory 
of the Lord. The angel told them of the birth of 
the Saviour, who is Christ the Lord. (Christ means 
the promised Messiah of the Jews, and Lord means one 
who has authority to rule over us.) These shepherds 
went "with haste" to Bethlehem. And when they saw 
and heard of this newborn Saviour, "they made known 
abroad the saying which was told them concerning 
this child." They returned to. their sheep 
"glorifying and praising God." So should we when 
we hear and see the salvation of God sent to earth 
by God's love. 

The wise men followed the miraculous star from 
the East. Never before had a king of the Jews 
attracted this kind of attention. The story is a 
familiar one, but notice this, that they worshipped 
this Baby and gave him rich gifts from their 



THE PILGRIM 



treasures. So should we respond in worship and 
giving of our bodies and souls to our God for His 
wonderful deliverance from sin and death. 

Simeon in the temple blessed God that his eyes 
had seen His salvation. He blessed the little 
family and prophesied of the coming conflict as 
"the thoughts of many hearts (are) revealed." He 
resigned himself to die in peace as God's Word to 
him had been fulfilled. So should we too, be 
resigned and should bless God for His faithfulness 
to us in history and in each of our personal lives. 

The prophetess Anna gave thanks to God for this 
Saviour and "spake of him to all them that looked 
for redemption in Jerusalem." So should we too 
give thanks and spread the message of God's love in 
sending the Saviour for us. 

The Saviour's birth is truly a wonderful event 
in the history. May we never forget what has been 
done by God for our salvation. If we observe this 
time, may it be with reverence, worship, praise, 
and a willingness to tell the gospel—the good news 
of salvation. If we choose to ignore a day that 
has been distorted and used by the world for 
debauchery, drunkeness, and idolatry, let us still 
never forget God ' s mercy and our indebtedness . May 
we confess with John the apostle: 

"In this was manifested the love of God toward 
us, because that God sent his only begotten Son 
into the world, that we might live through him." 

"And we have seen and do testify that the Father 
sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world." 

Would you know the love of Jesus 
When He came to earth one day 
To become our precious Saviour 
As we hear the prophets say? 

Would you praise this love of Jesus 
That has rescued you and me 
When he died to make us holy 
Gave His life on Calvary's tree? 



THE PILGRIM 



Would you share this love of Jesus 
With a neighbor or a friend 
Would you tell them how He saved you — 
Gave you life that has no end? 

If you will, this love of Jesus 
You can know and you can praise; 
You can share it with a neighbor; 
You can have it all your days. 

—L.C. 



UNCLE ERNEST'S MEDITATIONS 

Whosoever Will 

Revelation 22:17: "...And whosoever will, let 
him take the water of life freely." So we see the 
Lord came to offer salvation to all that will 
accept it. God took great sinners and prepared 
them to occupy high positions in His kingdom, as 
David, Paul, and many others, to show His great 
power in us to serve Him and not follow our selfish 
desires. So we must be willing to have Him fit us 
for His kingdom. 

Strength in Weakness 

Revelation 3:17: "Because thou sayest, I am 
rich, and increased with goods, and have need of 
nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, 
and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked." So 
we see how our ability to handle the affairs of 
this world can build up confidence in self and 
cause us to turn away from the Lord . This is one 
of the signs that the Lord's return is near. II 
Corinthians 12:9: "And he said unto me, My grace 
is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made 
perfect in weakness..." 



THE PILGRIM 



Answer To Prayer 
John 15:7, "If ye abide in me, and my words 
abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it 
shall be done unto you." In James we read, "Ye 
ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye 
may consume it upon your lusts." So the Lord may 
need to prepare us to receive, that it will not be 
to our hurt. We need to patiently wait till the 
Lord sees good to answer our prayer. 

Self Examination 
When we study the Bible, we find it give3 an 
account of almost every temptation Satan has to 
offer to get us to quit serving the Lord. Almost 
all the faithful ones were deceived at times but 
finally overcame their mistakes, which encourages 
us to never quit trying or give up to Satan. Jesus 
was the only sinless one who never yielded to 
Satan's temptations at any time. He set the 
perfect example for us to follow. I John 2:1: "My 
little children, these things write I unto you, 
that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an 
advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the 
righteous. " So Jesus suffers with us when we sin. 
And His long-suffering is for the salvation of as 
many as possible. — Ernest Wagner, 

Modesto , California 



MARRIAGE 

BEERY-CRIST Jonathan Beery and Angie Crist were 
married November 9 in New Paris, Indiana. 
New Address: 24191 CE. 42 

Nappanee, IN 46550 
(219) 831-5828 



ADDRESS CHANGE: Ben Cover 

19400 Cherokee Rd. 
Tuolumne, CA 95379 



PILGRIM INDEX —1991 
ARTICLES 

After Calvary -L.C. Apr/May 

Ceasefire -L.C. $ ar 

Changes -Miriam Beery Mar 

Common Communing Communications -Ron Cable Jun 

"Did You Say Thank You?" -L.C. Oct /Nov 

Do We Believe?-L.C. Mar 

Encourage One Another -Elva Royer Jul 

Happy New Year -L.C. j an 

Interpretation or Obedience? -James Hite Jan 

Lifelong Study -L.C. Aug/Sep 

Our Saviour's Peace -L.C. Feb 

The Coming of Jesus -L.C. Dec 

The Day -Kenneth Martin Feb 

The Menace of Materialistic Minds -Ron Cable Jan 

The Principle Thing -L.C. Jul 

The Ultimate Calamity -Harold Royer Oct/Nov 

The Wall Came Down -Lester Showaiter Feb 
The Wilderness Journey 

sel. by Mrs. Kenneth Martin Jul 

Waiting -L.C. Jun 

What Is A Lie? -James Hite Jul 

Why You Need Jesus -David L. Martin Aug/Sep 

BIBLE STUDY 



Matthew 5 

Matthew 5 

Matthew 7 

The Golden Rule 

Acts 1 

Acts 2 

Acts 4 



-Peter Cover 



-Edward Wagner 
-Peter Cover 



Mar 
Apr/May 

Jun 

Jul 
Aug/Sep 
Oct/Nov 

Dec 



OBITUARIES 



Susanna Wagner Jan 10 
Isaac Baker May 25 

Ruth Elizabeth Wolf May 27 



POEMS 

Atonement -James Beery Aug/Sep 

Calvary Covers It All -Mrs. Walter G. Taylor Mar 

Earthen Vessels -Vera Miller Jan 

God is Always There -Linda Blocher Jun 

God is With Us -L.C. Oct/Nov 

Faithful Under Cover -Mrs. E. W. Grossman Aug/Sep 

HarkI The Voice of Jesus -Daniel March Feb 

If Christ Would Come Just Now -H. L. Turner Dec 

I Met The Master -Anon. Aug/Sep 

Leaving All to Follow Jesus -Ida M. Budd Oct/Nov 
Never Alone in The Darkness 

sel. by Susie Coning Mar 
Holy Saviour -C. Elliott 

sel. by Daniel Beery Mar 

Once in Royal David's City -C.F. Alexander Dec 

Paradox -Huw Menai Jun 

Shining Shore -David Nelson Jan 

Summer Suns Are Glowing -William How Oct/Nov 

Thank Thee Lord -G.E.L. Cotton Oct/Nov 

The Rock That is Higher Than I -Annie Baker Jun 

Therefore Give Us Love -C. Wordsworth Apr/May 
Things Mostly Happen For The Best -Edgar Guest Jan 

True Worth -Alice Cary Apr/May 

Try Again sel by L.C. Jul 

We Rest on Thee -Edith Cherry Jul 

Would You Know The Love Of Jesus? -L.C. Dec 

HISTORICALS 

John Nass -Otho Winger Jan 

Letter to Jacob Wilhelm from John Nass Feb 

" (Journey across Atlantic) Mar 

" Con't. (Journey on ship) Apr/May 

Peter Becker Jun 

The Ephrata Society Jul 

Basic "Ground Searching Questions" Aug/Sep 

Dec 



YOUTH PAGE 

Problems -Danny Wagner Jan 

Bible Study -L.C. Feb 

The Christian's Fight -Peter Cover Mar 

I Love Him More Each Day -Martha Wagner Mar 

Hmmm -Lloyd Wagner Apr/May 

Try Again -L.C. Jul 

Faithful Under Cover -Sarah Cover Aug/Sep 

Publican to Apostle -Rhoda Cover Oct/Nov 

If Christ Would Come Just Now -Miriam Beery Dec 

UNCLE ERNEST'S MEDITATIONS 

Reflections, Love Mercy, Learning, Obedience, 

Perilous Times, Our Crowns Jan 

Peace, Anger, First Love, Mar 
Making Decisions, Peace, Holy Ghost Baptism, 

Our Present Time Apr/May 
A Precious Promise, Repentance, Correction, 

Good and Evil, Love Jun 
Self Denial, Confidence in Christ, Jesus' 

Promise, The Last Day, Life or Death Jul 
God Is, Our Thinking, Self Preservation, 

God's Time Aug/Sep 
Our Thoughts and Speech, The Spirit We Need, 

Growing in Love, Reasonable Oct/Nov 
Whosoever Will, Strength in Weakness, Answer 

to Prayer, Self Examination Dec 

CHILDREN'S PAGE -by Everett Oyler 

God Makes No Mistakes Jan 

Good Flavor Feb 

Kindness Pays adp. from "Coals of Fire" Mar 

Spring is Here Apr/May 

Willing to Pay The Price Jun 

Stay On Top Jul 

Light And Darkness Aug/Sep 

Are We Forgiving? Oct/Nov 

Faithful Friends adp. from "God's Minutes" Dec 



MARRIAGES 

Samuel Royer & Rosanna Cover May 25 

Greg Flora & Elisabeth Martin Jun 22 

Greg Yoder & Kimberly Oyler Sep 7 

Peter Cover & Denita Huffman Sep 14 

Jonathan Beery & Angle Christ Nov 9 



BAPTISMS 




Eric Brubaker 


Jan 20 


Sam Cover 


Apr 14 


Emily Brubaker 


May 5 


Maria Huffman 


Jul 18 


Ray Davis 


Oct 5 



BIRTHS 

Amos Lloyd Cable Jan 7 

Clement Jay Martin Jan 24 

Janita Ruth Royer Apr 11 

Evan Bartholomew Martin Jun 14 

Preston David Cover Jul 6 

Andrea Beth Cover Sep 15 

Alex Mark Royer Oct 11 

Twyla Dawn Bowser Oct 16 

James Eldon Miller Nov 26 

Isaac James Beery Nov 29 

Melody Grace Royer Dec 2 



Sincere thanks to all our subscribers and 
boosters for 1991* May the coming year be one of 
diligence and vigilance as we watch for Jesus' 
return. Keep writing and sending us your favorites 
in poetry or prose. Please also send in names of 
friends who may wish to receive The Pilgrim . 
Wishing all the grace, mercy, and peace of God. 

— Leslie and Martha Cover 



Pfetorttal 



11 



"BASIC OR GROUND SEARCHING QUESTIONS" PROPOSED 
TO ALEXANDER MACK AND HIS BRETHREN BY EBERHARD 
LOUIS GRUBER. 

QUESTION 2: Could the church of God have 
existed at any time and in any manner even with but 
few members, without the original and outward 
ordinance of baptism, as the Israelite church 
(according to Joshua 5:5-7) existed for consider- 
able time in the wilderness without practicing 
circumcision? 

ANSWER: The church of Christ is ordained in no 
other way by the true Master-Builder, Jesus Christ, 
than that it should observe His baptism and 
ordinances. Christ indeed ordained everything 
perfectly in His congregation or church through His 
apostles and teachers, and sufficiently confirmed 
it by signs and miracles. For this reason, the 
fact is incontestable that a congregation or church 
of Christ could never have existed without the 
baptism and ordinances as commanded by the true 
Pounder. 

We do not deny that there could have been souls 
who were attracted in secret to the church of 
Christ. Whether, however, they followed and 
publicly professed Christ, or whether they preferred 
the honor of the world to the honor of God, we will 
not determine. As far as the Israelite church is 
concerned, it can be clearly seen that while in the 
wilderness the children had to bear the reproach 
of Egypt and suffer for the trangressions of their 
fathers I However, as soon as they were about to 
enter the promised land, and before they took the 
first city, Jericho, they first all had to be 
circumcised. God said to Joshua (5:9): "This day 
have I rolled away the reproach of Egypt from off 
you." Only after this did they dare to celebrate 
the Passover and not before. 

This is then a sign for us that as long as we 



12 THE PILGRIM 



walk in the wilderness and in great disorder and 
uncertainty — even though we have gone out of God — 
we can still neither enter the house of God nor 
break the bread in the communion of Jesus and His 
members. God demands also of us that we should be 
baptized; He will indeed demand it of everyone 
although perhaps in secret, if men will only listen 
to the inner voice and obey it with denial of self. 

QUESTION 5: Did, then, the church of God here 
on earth completely cease to exist during the time 
that the early ordinance of baptism was no longer 
observed? 

ANSWER: If the early ordinance of baptism had 
ceased to exist, then, of course, the church of 
Christ would also have ceased to exist. Even if 
there had been souls here and there who lamented 
the great apostasy, they could not have been called 
a church. However, we believe, and it can be shown 
from the ancient histories, that the early form of 
baptism as ordained by the ordinance of Christ has 
never ceased to exist, even if there were but few 
members. 

QUESTION 4: How would you reconcile this with 
the promise of Jesus (Matthew 16:18) that the gates 
of hell shall not prevail against the church, and 
(28:20) that He will be with them always to, the 
close of the age, and similar declarations? 

ANSWER: This has already been answered because 
we believe that the gates of hell have not prevail- 
ed against the church of Christ; it has endured and 
will endure until the close of the age. 

— from EUROPEAN ORIGINS OF THE BRETHREN 



by Donald F. Durnbaugh 



The world has forgotten, 
In its concern with Left and Right, 
That there is an Above and Below. 

— Selected 



THE PILGRIM 13 



BIBLE STUDY 

We had a profitable Bible study on Acts 4 last 
month. We had some interesting discussions on the 
apostles' trial after they healed the lame man near 
the temple. They were thrown into prison and put 
on trial the next day before the high priest and 
his friends and family. They couldn't condemn 
Peter and John on any point, but they still told 
them not to teach any more. Verses 19 and 20 point 
out how steadfast the apostles were. They had al- 
ready decided no matter what may be the consequenc- 
es, that they would speak for the Lord. And verse 
21 shows that the rulers could do nothing to punish 
them because they were afraid of what the people 
would do. Through this whole trial the man that 
was healed from his lameness just stood by. He 
didn't have to say anything to be a witness of what 
was done. There is a good comparison here. Our 
very lifestyle should show to those about us that 
we are Christians. 

Peter put it well that Jesus of Nazareth, the 
stone which was "set at naught" of the rulers, was 
the one that gave the power to heal this man. 
There is great power when Christians use the name 
of Jesus. This stone seemed to be in the way to 
the rulers of Israel. They always pushed it off to 
the side as useless. If they only would have 
accepted it, it would have saved their building and 
made it strong. 

The last of the chapter tells us of the unity 
which was felt is those early years of Christian- 
ity. They loved each other enough to share every- 
thing they owned with the group. This can only be 
done when the believers are in unity and have love 
for each other. 

— Peter Cover 



14 THE PILGRIM 



FOR YOUTH 

IF CHRIST WOULD COME JUST NOW 

It may be at morn, when the day is awaking, 
When sunlight through darkness and shadow is 

breaking, 
That Jesus will come in the fullness of glory, 
To receive from the world "His own." 

It may be at midday; it may be at twilight; 

It may be, perchance, that the blackness of midnight 

Will burst into light in the bla^e of His glory, 
When Jesus receives "His own." — H.L.Turner 

How often do we consider that Christ could come 
at this very moment? How would He find us in 
attitude and act? 

Have you ever stopped to think of this when 
engaged in an entertaining activity that had no 
real value but was just to entertain — to be "for a 
laugh"? Have you ever wondered as you were in the 
foolish act, "What if Jesus would come just now?" 
We think how it would appear to Him, meaningless, 
no doubt foolish. 

Yet, as we know, Christ is at all our activi- 
ties. How often is He recognized by us there? 
Isn't it more His will when our activities have 
purpose and are for our spiritual good and His 
glory? 

God is not displeased when we are praising Him 
in song. Neither is He displeased when we work 
together to help someone or do some project that 
may brighten the life of one who is lonely or 
sick. We don't feel He is displeased when we are 
entertaining friends with food and togetherness, 
but surely He would be more pleased if our 

activities then would be of higher quality than 
"just for a laugh." 

Recently, we came across some sermon notes, some 



THE PILGRIM 15 



questions with which to evaluate our activities. 
One was, "Are they morally upbuilding?" Another 
was, "Do they promote developement of good 
character?" And the last one, "Would they be a 
welcome place for the Lord to come and 
participate?" May we be lovers of God more than of 
pleasure. (II Timothy 3:4) 

When we are young and strong we like challenges. 
To think of wholesome activities to do together is 
not a challenge for physical strength, but it 
certainly is a challenge I Maybe as we try to meet 
it we'll find suggestions from others who were once 
in our place. 

Our more meaningful activities, the ones we know 
are pleasing to Christ, may not be filled with a3 
much gaiety or laughter, but they are of a fuller 
pleasure. Neither do they leave us feeling empty, 
perhaps guilty. 

We can be assured that if pleasing God is our 
highest goal in whatever we are doing, at any time, 
then He will receive us as "His own" when He comes 
again. We will be. ready — if Christ would come just 
now. 

". . .Whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of 
God." (I Cor. 10:31) 

— Daniel and Miriam Beery 
Nappanee , Indiana 



BIRTHS 

MILLER — A son, James Eldon, born November 26, to 
Bill and Marilyn Miller of Salida, California. 

BEERY — A son, Isaac James, born November 29, to 
Daniel and Miriam Beery of Nappanee, Indiana. 

ROYER — A daughter, Melody Grace, born December 2, to 

Joe and Elizabeth Royer, of Mishawaka, Indiana. 



CHILDREN'S PAGE: FAITHFUL FRIENDS 

Damon and Pythias were very close friends. They 
played together and worked together. One day 
Pythias did something that displeased the king, and 
he ordered Pythias to he put to death. Pythias 
loved his home and his parents, so he asked the 
king if he could go and tell his parents good-bye. 

"Why should I let you go?" asked the king. "If 
I did you wouldn't come back." Pythias tried to 
think of some way he could prove to the king that 
he would come back. Pythias and Damon talked it 
over, and Damon said he would stay in Pythias' 
place until he returned from his home. Damon told 
the king their plans. 

"But," said the king to Damon, "Pythias will 
never return." Damon said, "I know he will return 
because he is honest and true. If he does not 
return, I will die in his place." 

Damon was placed in prison, and Pythias went 
home to tell his parents good-bye. The day arrived 
for the execution, and Damon was led by the 
soldiers out to die. The door opened and in ran 
Pythias just in time to save Damon from death. 

The king asked Pythias why he came back. 
Pythias said, "Did not I say I would come back?" 
The king was so touched with the honesty and true 
devotion of the boys that he said, "Pythias shall 
live. Such true friends are worth more than my 
kingdom. " 

One of the richest gifts we have on this earth 
is true friends. But to have true friends we must 
be true friends to others. Always treat your 
friend like you would want to be treated. 

From "A Real Friend" in God's Minutes by 

C.L. Paddock Adapted by Everett Oyler 

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